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  • Is Twitter Being a Big Brother? (2/22/2021) by Rohan Seth - This article was first published in Deccan Herald. Views are personal. Some of the most fascinating stories about the internet are buried in boring legal documents that most people will never read. When Twitter banned Donald Trump earlier this year, people worldwide argued about whether platforms like Twitter should have such power. It was a […]
  • In its centenary year, the CCP’s revisionist history (2/17/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - In July, the Communist Party of China (CCP) will celebrate its centenary. This is the most important event in the CCP’s political calendar. It presents an opportunity for the leadership to highlight developmental achievements, which are seen as critical to its legitimacy. Economic development, however, is one of many factors that feed the algorithm of […]
  • Eye on China: Pangong Lake Disengagement – ‘three cattle spirit’ – BRI – New Births Fall – Biden-Xi Call – BBC – WHO (2/15/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. The Pangong Tso Disengagement Both China and India announced the beginning of disengagement along the north and south banks of Pangong Tso this week. The first announcement came from Beijing, with China’s defense […]
  • All Things Policy: Struggle and Revolution in Telugu Literature (2/15/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Telugu culture is most often associated with Tollywood today – but at one point, revolutionary Telugu writers and poets were among the most progressive and influential intellectuals of their time. Priya Kodidala, development consultant and founder of The Telugu Archive on Instagram, joins Anirudh Kanisetti to talk about the growth of revolutionary Telugu literature, […]
  • The PLA Insight: LAC Disengagement; Chinese Scholars Writing on the Sino-Indian Dispute; The South China Sea; Taiwan; Myths and Realities of China’s MCF (2/13/2021) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: LAC Disengagement It was a busy week for China and India. Both countries have started the process of disengagement of the forces at Pangong Tso this Wednesday. The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) and the Chinese Foreign Ministry issued two separate statements on the LAC situation. On the Indian side, since the Parliament […]
  • An Ongoing Journal on Russia-Japan Relations #3 (2/10/2021) by Aditya Pareek - In previous editions of this journal, we have explored how the Japan-Russia relationship is centred around the Kuril Islands territorial dispute. And the prospects of softening Russian public opinion through persuasion via economic cooperation between the two countries.  Moscow has taken concrete steps in the past year which indicate that it is the Russian side […]
  • All Things Policy: The Contest to Chart the Indo-Pacific’s Oceans (2/10/2021) by Aditya Pareek - Major powers are ramping up their efforts to map the undersea environment of the Indo-Pacific. Charting and mapping the ocean deeps confer both economic and military advantages and to keep up, India will have to adopt innovative solutions. Aditya Pareek talks to Suyash Desai about how India’s hydrographic efforts contribute to its diplomacy and naval […]
  • The race to map the ocean deep (2/9/2021) by Aditya Pareek - India is falling behind efforts to map the undersea environment of the Indo-Pacific region Major powers are investing time and money deploying UUVs in these waters because of the valuable oceanographic and hydrographic data they provide. Oceanography is the study of the physical and biological aspects of the oceans. Hydrography is the process by which […]
  • All Things Policy: Making Sense of India’s Defence Budget (2/9/2021) by Suyash Desai - A major highlight of the Budget 2021-22 was the 18.75% increase in the capital outlay in allocation towards defence. Suyash Desai talks to Lt Gen Prakash Menon and Pranay Kotasthane about this year’s hike in capital outlay and the reduction in pension allocations. Link to our document – https://takshashila.org.in/takshashila-discussion-document-a-human-capital-investment-model-for-indias-national-security-system/
  • All Things Policy: When The Stonks Are Down (2/8/2021) by Rohan Seth - The Reddit-GameStop saga has been making news around the world. The next few weeks will raise important questions about how much responsibility social media platforms have in cases like these and whether they can be sued for financial damages in similar cases. Anirudh Kanisetti talks to Prateek Waghre and Rohan Seth to examine the fine […]
  • Space Matters #9 (2/6/2021) by Aditya Pareek - At a Glance: Roscosmos chief reacts to US de-compartmentalising civilian and military elements. US Space Command publishes its strategic vision and justifies militarisation of space. US functionaries seek review of US Space Force acquisitions. Russia launches new ELINT satellite in the country’s first orbital launch of 2021. Russian commercial space enterprise enters space tourism sector. […]
  • MisDisMal-Information Edition 30 (2/6/2021) by Prateek Waghre - This is an excerpt from Edition 30 of MisDisMal-Information:  For the complete edition, go to: Of Whose Time Is It Anyway, IndiaAgainstPropOganda, Big Tech-lomacy Whose time is it anyway? Over the last few weeks, I’ve been asked this question on more that one occasion > Do internet shutdowns help in addressing information disorder as various governments claim […]
  • COVID-19 vaccine diplomacy: India’s opportunity to regain leadership in the neighborhood (2/6/2021) by Guest Post Takshashila - COVID-19 vaccine diplomacy: India’s opportunity to regain leadership in the neighborhood By Pranathi Rao In early 2020, India responded to COVID-19 with a strict lockdown, mask mandates, and a broad shutdown of schools and recreational centers. The disease burden- as the country with the second highest number of total COVID-19 cases- meant that India spent […]
  • The PLA Insight: The Sino-Indian Relations; BGI and the PLA; Chinese Survey Ships; Sea Sick: Chinese Submariners; Taiwan; Testimonies: the CCP Centennial (2/5/2021) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: Sino-Indian Relations India’s Finance Minister Nirmala Sitaraman presented the Union Budget in the Indian Parliament this week. Against the backdrop of the stand-off with China and an impetus for military modernisation, capital expenditure in the defence budget saw an increase of ₹21,326 crores, or 18.75 per cent, from the Budget estimates of 2020-21. Moreover, […]
  • #10 Tokyo Olympics – COVID-19 vaccine race – China’s coast guard law-Senkaku islands – Shortage in semiconductor supply and the automakers’ challenge. (2/5/2021) by Divya Suresh - #10 Tokyo Olympics – COVID-19 vaccine race – China’s coast guard law-Senkaku islands – Shortage in semiconductor supply and the automakers’ challenge. By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 5th Jan –31st  Jan Japan is likely to extend its coronavirus state of emergency for another month in Tokyo, Osaka and a few other prefectures. Toshimitsu Motegi, Minister for […]
  • All Things Policy: The Seleukid Empire and the Silk Roads (2/5/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Though often seen as a footnote in Indian history, the Seleukid Empire dominated much of the Hellenistic world after the death of Alexander the Great. Anirudh Kanisetti joins Aditya Ramanathan to discuss its legacy, its relationships with India and the rest of the world, and how it led to the emergence of the international […]
  • Does the budget meet India’s defence requirements? (2/4/2021) by Pranay Kotasthane - Until 2019, defence spending made headlines around just two events in a year. The first was when the Union budget was tabled in Parliament, and the second was when the Swedish thinktank, SIPRI, released its formidable comparative military expenditure report. That scenario changed in FY 2020-21. China’s incursions in Ladakh highlighted the urgent and long-term […]
  • All Things Policy: What Does 137% Hike in Health Budget Mean? (2/4/2021) by Sarthak Pradhan -  A major highlight of the Budget 2021-22 was the 137% increase in the budget allocation towards health. Sunila Dixit talks to Sarthak Pradhan and Apurva Kumar about the details of this hike and how this year’s budget compares with the previous fiscal year.
  • All Things Policy: Unpacking Budget 2021 (2/3/2021) by Pranay Kotasthane - This year’s budget included several welcome steps such as higher infrastructure funding and a greater allocation to healthcare. It also included newer ways to raise resources, such as the use of asset monetisation. The budget’s drawbacks included higher import duties and new cesses on agriculture and infrastructure. Pranay Kotashtane, Anupam Manur, and Sarthak Pradhan discuss […]
  • Budget’s disinvestment targets are heroic. Modi govt must show unprecedented transparency (2/2/2021) by Nitin Pai - More than macroeconomic numbers like fiscal deficits, outlays and revenue targets, we can get a good sense of the Budget by looking at the tax rates. If there are new or higher taxes, or more complicated tax rules, it is usually a bad Budget. If there are lower taxes and compliance simplified, it’s a great […]
  • All Things Policy: Asia’s Cold Frontier: Tracking Japan – Russia Ties (2/2/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan - As immediate neighbours, Japan and Russia have an uneasy relationship going back centuries. A long-standing territorial dispute over the Kuril Islands has held back the promise of widening economic cooperation. Could that change in the near future? Aditya Pareek and Aditya Ramanathan discuss recent developments in Japan-Russia ties and the trends that define this fascinating […]
  • Hand Me the Paper #4 (2/1/2021) by Rohan Seth - You can read the full edition and subscribe to the newsletter here. I do a fair bit of reading. I read 52 books last year and am doing it again this year. Starting this year, I also plan on reading more academic papers around tech and policy. Recording my readings and (sometimes, observations + annotated copies on this newsletter). […]
  • All Things Policy: Alexei Navalny – The Face of the Russian Opposition? (2/1/2021) by Aditya Pareek -  Following the arrest of well known Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, an unprecedented number of protests have broken out across Russia. Navalny has received widespread media attention across the world, after he was allegedly poisoned with Novichok, a nerve agent commonly associated with alleged high profile assassinations carried out by the more shadowy arms of […]
  • What we must regulate when we regulate social media platforms (1/31/2021) by Nitin Pai - The global debate over how to govern Big Tech has intensified after Twitter, Facebook, Alphabet and Amazon de-platformed former US President Donald Trump and some of his supporters in the wake of the mob raid on the US Capitol on 6 January. Clearly, transnational technology platforms not only influence politics and markets through actions of […]
  • Eye on China: LAC Perspectives – The Longer Telegram – Vaccine Diplomacy – WEF Speech – Tech War (1/31/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties The 9th round of Corps Commander-level talks were finally held last Sunday. These went on for 16 hours apparently and ended with a joint statement being issued. It said that “the two sides […]
  • Looking beyond the Budget numbers to see if government schemes really work (1/30/2021) by Sarthak Pradhan - On February 1, the Union Finance Minister will present the annual financial statement — commonly called the Union Budget — to the Parliament. Soon after that, TV discussions and newspaper columns will be flooded with conversations on new schemes announced and monies allocated — why didn’t the government reduce subsidies by x per cent, why […]
  • Jack Ma story: China’s deep strategic ambition (1/29/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Earlier this month, the Chinese tech tycoon, Jack Ma, made his first public appearance ever since the suspension of Ant Group’s $37 billion IPO in November. Ant is an affiliate company of Alibaba, the e-commerce giant that he co-founded. The crackdown on Ant followed Jack Ma’s comments in late October during a public event in […]
  • China-India Tensions; India in DF-26 (dual-use) launcher’s range; Coastguard Law; PLA Salary Increase; 250 Missile Tests in 2020; PLA Mobilisation (1/29/2021) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: China-India Tensions It’s been a hectic week for China and India on diplomatic and military fronts. Yesterday, Dr S Jaishankar, India’s Minister for Foreign Affairs gave a speech on the state of China-India relations at the 13th All India Conference for China Studies. I am briefly highlighting the important points from his speech, you […]
  • All Things Policy: What Angkor Teaches Us About India (1/29/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan - Southeast Asia is generally thought of as being “Indianised” for much of its history – but what does that actually mean? Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan discuss the kingdom of Angkor in modern Cambodia to understand its unique culture and historical trajectory.
  • All Things Policy: How to Foster Science and Tech in India (1/28/2021) by Shambhavi Naik -  The Draft 5th Science, Technology and Innovation Policy 2020 outlines a grand vision for Indian science over the coming years. But is it a feasible one? Aditya Ramanathan and Shambhavi Naik discuss the ideas proposed in this policy, and the questions it leaves unanswered.
  • Voting Technology: Time for electoral reforms (1/27/2021) by Prakash Menon - The possibility of improving the quality of leadership is the redeeming feature of democracy. Declining standards in political probity, the unrepresentative character of the elected legislatures, corrupt practices like electoral bonds are major concerns and call for reform of the electoral system. According to an analysis of affidavits of winners in the 2019 Lok Sabha […]
  • All Things Policy: Behind the Scenes at All Things Policy (1/27/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - On 27 January, All Things Policy, the world’s only daily public policy podcast, marked 500 episodes. Manoj Kewalramani talks to Aditya Ramanathan and Anirudh Kanisetti about the surprising origins of the podcast, its evolution over the last two years, and its exciting future.
  • Eye On China: LAC Talks & Villages – Corruption & Centenary – Signals For Biden – Antitrust – CPEC (1/26/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties So, the 9th round of Corps commander-level talks are underway today at Moldo on the Chinese side of the Line of Actual Control opposite Chushul which is one the Indian side of the […]
  • Indians have put their republic on a pedestal, forgotten to practise it each day (1/26/2021) by Nitin Pai - It’s Republic Day. We will celebrate it as usual with a grand military parade in New Delhi, and flag-hoisting functions at government offices, educational institutions, apartment complexes and neighbourhoods. We will sing patriotic songs, honour our soldiers, listen to a speech by a chief guest and enjoy the rest of the holiday. In some of these functions, we […]
  • Why the rupee overvaluation must be kept in check (1/25/2021) by Ajit Ranade - Inflation is nothing but erosion of the purchasing power of the money in your pocket. If in one year the price of vegetables, milk or petrol goes up by 10 per cent, it is as if the Rs 100 in your pocket has gone down to Rs 90. Read the full article in Times of […]
  • All Things Policy: What Should India Do With Its Rare Earth Reserves? (1/25/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Rare earth underpins the Indian economy. But despite being home to the world’s fifth-largest rare earth reserves, India overwhelmingly imports these crucial resources and their derivatives from China, its most significant geopolitical rival. Anirudh Kanisetti joins Manoj Kewalramani to discuss the issues with India’s current strategy and what steps need to be taken to […]
  • Signalling a race against time (1/24/2021) by Rohan Seth - This article was first published in Deccan Herald. Views are personal. As a child of the nineties, I have had the privilege of watching the internet evolve over the ages. I remember rushing back from school and throwing away my bag to switch on the computer and the internet. Back in the day, you had […]
  • An Elephant in the Room – Recent Case of WhatsApp Fallout Amongst Indian Users (1/23/2021) by Guest Post Takshashila - An Elephant in the Room – Recent Case of WhatsApp Fallout Amongst Indian Users   By Kamesh Shekar Users in India recently received an update notification from WhatsApp on changing terms and privacy policy.This notification caused a spurt of turbulence and high-octane debates amongst the Indian users on consumer choice, privacy safeguards on protecting the personal […]
  • All Things Policy: How Not to Secure Women’s Liberty (1/22/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The Madhya Pradesh government recently proposed that women living away from home must register with police stations to be tracked. This may have serious implications for the mobility and privacy of millions of citizens. Anirudh Kanisetti speaks to Asmita Ghosh, Digital Campaigner, and former Campaign Lead at Feminism in India, to understand the impact […]
  • All Things Policy: The Vaccine Update: India’s Rollout and Beyond (1/21/2021) by Shambhavi Naik -  As India launches the first phase of its COVID-19 vaccination programme, Shambhavi Naik talks to Rohan Seth about domestic and international developments, India’s vaccine diplomacy, and the crucial question of efficacy.
  • Space Matters #8 (1/20/2021) by Aditya Pareek - At a Glance:  US Space Force fields its own military intelligence branch.  US Space Force leadership acknowledges there is a gap in the US’s in-orbit proximity threat categorisation capability. The US Military’s space programmes aren’t self-sufficient for mission-critical hardware components.  China is building new space rocket engines.  OneWeb cuts its  number of planned satellites and […]
  • All Things Policy: Launching India’s Space Start-ups into Orbit (1/20/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan -  As Bengaluru-based start-up Pixxel prepares for the launch of its first satellite into space, we talk to its CEO, Awais Ahmed, about India’s growing commercial space sector, the promise it holds, and the challenges it faces.
  • Why India will not see a big second wave of Covid-19 (1/19/2021) by Nitin Pai - There will not be a significant second wave of Covid-19 in India. Last August, using a Cynically Optimistic Back Of The Envelope, or COBOTE, calculation, I estimated that Covid-19 will end its epidemic phase in India by January 2021. Karthik Shashidhar, my collaborator, used the curve-fitting technique to predict that the pandemic will be over […]
  • All Things Policy: Declassified: The US’ Indo-Pacific Strategy (1/19/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - In an unexpected move last week, the US National Security Advisor declassified the Trump administration’s 2018 U.S. Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific. What does this tell us about America’s approach to the region? What does it mean from an Indian perspective? And how will this impinge on the new Joe Biden administration? Aditya Ramanathan discusses […]
  • Anticipating the Unintended #100: Intoxicating Ear drops (1/18/2021) by Pranay Kotasthane - PolicyWTF: Prohibition and Morality This section looks at egregious public policies. Policies that make you go: WTF, Did that really happen? — Pranay Kotasthane If one were to write a book chronicling bans on victimless crimes in India, the index entry for Morarji Desai would be a long one. After all, he holds the dubious distinction of turning […]
  • Eye on China: Trade Adjustment – Indo-Pacific – Rule of Law – Cyber Rules – Trump’s Parting Shots (1/18/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties As has been the case since May 2020, let’s begin with the situation in Ladakh, or rather discussions about the situation. India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar interacted with MPs from various parties […]
  • Weaning away foreign investment from China (1/18/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Over the past few years, there has been much discussion about India attracting firms that might be seeking to exit China. Initially, these conversations were driven by changes in the Chinese economy, such as rising labour costs, shifting focus towards new technologies and declining productivity. There was a sense that these changes, coupled with improving […]
  • Hand Me the Paper #3 (1/18/2021) by Rohan Seth - I do a fair bit of reading. I read 52 books last year and am doing it again this year. Starting this year, I also plan on reading more academic papers, mostly around tech and policy. Recording my readings and (sometimes, observations + annotated copies on this newsletter). What I Read This Week: Where Are We in the […]
  • #9 Emergency declared – India & Japan sign MoU – Diplomatic documents declassified – South Korean court’s ruling (1/18/2021) by Divya Suresh - #9 Emergency declared – India & Japan sign MoU – Diplomatic documents declassified – South Korean court’s ruling By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 1st Jan – 15th Jan. Suga declares a month-long emergency in Tokyo and some other prefectures to contain the coronavirus spread. ● A South Korean court’s recent ruling prosecuting the Japanese government is […]
  • Will Indian Scientific Temper Survive 2021? (1/18/2021) by Shambhavi Naik - (This article was first published in The Wire) 2020 was a disaster year for almost everyone – but it was a unique opportunity for Indian science. An oft-neglected enterprise, it received unprecedented attention as scientists tried to innovate in the diagnostics, treatment and vaccine spaces. Taken together, this was an opportunity to demonstrate India’s capabilities […]
  • All Things Policy: Jack and the Ant: A Fairytale that’s Ending? (1/18/2021) by Rohan Seth - China’s financial sector is making global news. Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba, Alipay and Ant Group, has not been heard from recently, while Chinese regulators are reportedly talking about breaking up his fintech empire. Rohan Seth talks to Manoj Kewalramani to understand what led to the Xi Jinping administration targeting China’s most famous entrepreneur. […]
  • America’s strategic rivalry with China won’t change under Biden (1/17/2021) by Nitin Pai - The United States’ Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific, an extant policy document declassified and published last week by the outgoing Donald Trump administration, is mostly music to New Delhi’s ears. Assuming that “a strong India, in cooperation with like-minded countries, would act as a counterbalance [to] China”, one of Washington’s objectives is to “accelerate India’s […]
  • Decoding the Signals Surrounding Signal’s Success (1/15/2021) by Atish Padhy - The defining feature of 21st-century innovation has been the reduction of friction. The most successful companies of our times – Google, Facebook, Uber, and so on – follow what economists David S. Evans and Richard Schmalensee call the “Matchmaker” business model.  These companies make their money by making it easier for one group of people […]
  • The PLA Insight: China-India Tensions; Sansha City and China’s South China Sea Strategy; C4ISR; Taiwan; Chinese UUVs; WJ-700 (1/15/2021) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: China and India Tensions The US National Security Advisor declassified the US Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific document over 20 years ahead of schedule, as the text was not due for public release until 2043. There are no major surprises for India, and it has been viewed as a major partner in the region […]
  • All Things Policy: Can India Displace China in Global Supply Chains? (1/15/2021) by Sarthak Pradhan - The rise in international tensions and the decline in economic globalisation are often touted as opportunities for India to become a critical part of global supply chains as businesses exit China. But how many enterprises are actually leaving China? Are they looking to India? And what can India do to become a more attractive destination […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc – India’s Opportunity to Displace China in Global Supply Chains (1/13/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion SlideDoc in PDF This assessment proposes a mix of two approaches that the Indian government should adopt in order to attract investments from companies looking to exit China. The first, a geostrategy-led approach, entails working with like-minded partners, particularly focussing on sectors with national security implications. The second, a case-by-case approach, involves […]
  • All Things Policy: What Biden Means for India (1/13/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan -  How will Joe Biden’s administration approach relations with India? Should Delhi be worried? Manoj Kewalramani and Aditya Ramanathan discuss the prospects for India-US ties in the post-Trump era.
  • A small step for Google (1/12/2021) by Rohan Seth - If you were to ask a group of a hundred people about their choice of a dream employer, chances are a significant number of them would mention Google. Picture modern offices with Google’s theme, which the journalist, Steven Levy, once described as, “decorated in a style that mixed high-tech Dumpster with nursery school”. And while […]
  • All Things Policy: Trustbusters! What the Microsoft Case Teaches Us About Antitrust (1/12/2021) by Rohan Seth -  Modern tech monopolies are being subject to antitrust investigations in the US and in India. There are lessons they can learn from Microsoft in the 1990s. Rohan Seth talks to Mihir Mahajan on Microsoft’s antitrust troubles and what they tell us about the present. Mihir Mahajan is an expert in intellectual property matters and […]
  • An ongoing journal on Russia-Japan relations #2 (1/11/2021) by Aditya Pareek - The state of economic cooperation between Japan and Russia Since the new Japanese Prime Minister Yoshihide Suga took over, the consensus has been that his administration will continue the policies of economic cooperation with Russia pursued by his predecessor Prime Minister Shinzo Abe. Japan is primarily motivated by two things in its relationship with Russia. […]
  • Anticipating the Unintended #98: Parliamentary Overslide (1/11/2021) by Pranay Kotasthane - Global Policy Watch — Storming Se Storming Tak: From 1642 To 2021 – RSJ Here’s a short quiz to begin things. What’s common to these dates (not an exhaustive list)? 4 January 1642: England Feb 27, 1933: Germany  Feb 23, 1981: Spain April 27, 2017: Macedonia Difficult? Here’s a clue. The latest entrant to this […]
  • China-India Border Dispute; PLA Regulations; Taiwan; Chinese Nuclear Forces, 2020; India’s Theatre Expansion: Sea Power to Balance China’s Rise (1/11/2021) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story:  China-India Border Dispute India’s Defence Ministry’s year-end review claims that the Indian troops are well entrenched along the Line of Actual Control (LAC) to counter any Chinese actions, even though efforts are made to resolve the ongoing stand-off through talks. The report also claims that the Chinese attempt to change the status quo in […]
  • Journal Article: India’s Theatre Expansion : Use of Sea Power to Balance China’s Rise (1/11/2021) by Suyash Desai - In Indian Public Policy Review’s latest issue, I examine the Sino-Indian problems and argue that development and demonstration of maritime power afford India the best way of managing China in the Indo-Pacific region. Link to the journal article
  • Book Review: Coping with China (1/11/2021) by Suyash Desai - Book review of India’s China Challenge: A Journey through China’s Rise and What It Means for India China’s rise in the past three decades has made it a formidable challenger to the international order. Under General Secretary Xi Jinping it has been on a quest to attain economic, military, diplomatic and technological supremacy by 2049, the centenary […]
  • All Things Policy: What was China’s PLA up to in 2020? (1/11/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - The year 2020 was critical for the Chinese armed forces. Its goal of achieving mechanisation was delayed, as were recruitment reforms. Meanwhile, assertion with regard to territorial disputes intensified. In this episode, Manoj Kewalramani talks to Suyash Desai about all the developments related to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army in 2020 and what we can […]
  • Eye on China: LAC Corps – S. Asia Dialogue – PSC Meeting – New Rules For Banks – Covid Outbreak & Probe – Schadenfreude & HK Arrests – IMF Assessment (1/10/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties Let’s begin with a new incident at the border. Indian media reported on Friday that a Chinese soldier was apprehended by the Indian Army at the southern bank of Pangong Tso […]
  • All Things Policy: What’s Going to Happen in 2021? (1/8/2021) by Anupam Manur -  2020 was one of the most turbulent years in recent history. What’s 2021 going to look like? Anupam Manur and Pranay Kotasthane speak to Anirudh Kanisetti about their big economic and geopolitical predictions for the next year. We’ll revisit this in 2022 to see if they managed to get anything right! Join Takshashila’s PublicGyaan […]
  • All Things Policy: Can you Speed up Vaccine Approval? (1/7/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  India’s approval of two COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use has received mixed responses. Shambhavi Naik, Anirudh Kanisetti and Sunila Dixit discuss the approval process, the possible consequences of speeding things up and the potential impact on public confidence.
  • All Things Policy: Great Books From a Year of Reading (1/6/2021) by Rohan Seth -  2020 has been a strange year. One thing that remained constant at Takshashila was our love for reading. Manoj Kewalramani joins Nitin Pai and Rohan Seth to talk about their reading lists and learnings from tech, policy, fiction, and beyond. Link to the latest edition of Rohan’s newsletter: https://pdfchomper.substack.com/p/hand-me-the-paper-2?r=5dfoh&utm_campaign=post&utm_medium=web&utm_source=copy Link to Rohan’s reading list: […]
  • Cautious Optimism (1/5/2021) by Ajit Ranade - The welcome to the new year was wishfully cheerful, riding more hope than evidence. Economic data that is coming out is still mixed, yet hopeful. But to have survived the year 2020 is itself a cause of celebration. Read the full article on OrissaPost
  • #8 Entry ban, #Tiananmen 1989, #Decarbonization goals, #Digitization efforts, #Economic pact with U.K. (1/5/2021) by Divya Suresh - #8 Entry ban, #Tiananmen 1989, #Decarbonization goals, #Digitization efforts, #Economic pact with U.K. By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 15th Dec – 31st Dec. ● Decarbonization recognized as the new area of cooperation in the Japan-U.S. alliance. ● In digitization of government services, Japan ranked last amongst other OECD nations. ● Japan bans entry of new foreign […]
  • DCGI’s Covaxin ‘approval’ is political jumla. It reinforces idea of Modi’s Atmanirbhar Bharat (1/5/2021) by Nitin Pai - Other than to the highly credulous, it is pretty obvious that the Drugs Controller General of India’s ‘approval’ for Bharat Biotech’s indigenous vaccine candidate, Covaxin, was announced for extra-scientific reasons. It has neither completed Phase 3 clinical trials, nor has the safety and efficacy data been published. In fact, the drug regulator has not so […]
  • All Things Policy: How Britain Spied on the Seas (1/5/2021) by Aditya Pareek - The Royal Navy has been one of the most formidable forces ever to put to sea in history. Through modern times, the Royal Navy has been served by a well-oiled intelligence machine made of many cogs. Aditya Pareek talks to Aditya Ramanathan about Andrew Boyd’s recent book, British Naval Intelligence Through the Twentieth Century, and […]
  • No matter what Bharat Biotech says, Covaxin is just not ready for approvals (1/5/2021) by Shambhavi Naik - Bharat Biotech got an approval for its COVID-19 vaccine and along with it came a lot of flak from critics who believe that the process was rushed for no valid reason. Dr Krishna Ella, the founder and chairman of Bharat Biotech, retaliated blaming everyone from the media to rival vaccine makers, except that his arguments hold […]
  • Hand Me the Paper #2 (1/4/2021) by Rohan Seth - I do a fair bit of reading. I read 52 books last year and am doing it again this year. Starting this year, I also plan on reading more academic papers, mostly around tech and policy. Recording my readings and (sometimes, observations + annotated copies on this newsletter). Please do recommend papers and share your insights! What I […]
  • Having survived 2020 is in itself a cause for celebration (1/4/2021) by Ajit Ranade - The welcome to the new year was wishfully cheerful, riding more on hope than on evidence. The economic data that is coming out is still mixed, yet hopeful. But to have survived 2020 is itself a cause for celebration. Disease, death, economic destruction and yet resilience, fortitude and determination is how most people experienced the […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: China, India and Doklam in 2020 (1/4/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti - Download the Strategic Assessment as a PDF. India’s conciliatory stance towards China in the aftermath of the 2017 Doklam crisis has led to a deterioration of the strategic situation at the India-Bhutan-China trijunction. Our analysis uses satellite imagery to show that: With China being prevented from extending its constructions westward following the 2017 crisis, the […]
  • Space Matters #7 (1/4/2021) by Aditya Pareek - At a glance: In an eventful fortnight, the US has released a new planetary protection strategy and a space nuclear power strategy, besides rechristening its Space Force personnel as “Guardians”. The Russian Military wrapped up the year 2020 with 21 satellite launches. The UK will retain access to the  European Space Agency’s Copernicus Earth observation […]
  • All Things Policy: The Curious Case of Markets, Masks and Hand Sanitisers (1/4/2021) by Saurabh Modi -  The availability and quality of face masks and hand sanitisers have improved many times over since the pandemic began. How did this happen? Sarthak Pradhan joins Saurabh Modi to discuss how markets solved the problem of scarcity with urgency and innovation.
  • The big convergence challenge that we face in this new decade (1/3/2021) by Nitin Pai - We enter the third decade of this millennium amid rising doubts, risks and worries about technology, markets, nationalism, democracy and the world order. The unqualified enthusiasm for them that we saw in the past two decades has given way to concerns about what their right dosage is, and what, if any, are the antidotes should […]
  • PLA in 2020: Year-end Review (1/3/2021) by Suyash Desai - The People’s Liberation Army (PLA) had an eventful 2020. It was involved in skirmishes and stand-offs on multiple peripheries throughout the year. In particular, 2020 has been the first major test of China’s capacity for large-scale military deployment and national defence mobilisation since military reforms. Most importantly, it marked the PLA’s deadline to achieve mechanisation […]
  • India, China and the Proverbial 13-year gap that is widening (1/2/2021) by Ajit Ranade - Two years ago, the Chinese people celebrated 40 years of the launch of their economic reforms. The achievement of this period is breath-taking. Read the full article on Times of India
  • An ongoing journal on Russia-Japan relations #1 (12/31/2020) by Aditya Pareek - Russia-Japan relations are an arena of geopolitics less explored than the headline grabbing contention between the West and Russia. As neighbours, Japan and Russia have always had an uneasy relationship that has seen many flashpoints including the 1904-05 Russo-Japanese war, which changed the very nature of great power conflict and combined arms warfare as we […]
  • The China Challenge – A Blue Paper (12/31/2020) by Aditya Pareek - Download the Blue Paper as a PDF The Takshashila Institution and Hudson Institute hosted The China Challenge online discussion series over six weeks between August 28, 2020, and October 2, 2020. The fundamental question underpinning these discussions was how India and the US can and should respond to China’s increasing assertiveness and growing global ambitions. […]
  • Why blocking Sci-Hub will actually hurt national interest (12/29/2020) by Nitin Pai - Earlier this month, three foreign academic publishers sued two foreign websites for copyright infringement in a case before the Delhi High Court. Elsevier, Wiley, and American Chemical Society, among the world’s largest publishers of academic papers, wanted the court to block Sci-Hub and LibGen, the largest providers of ‘free downloads’ of their content in India. […]
  • All Things Policy: Civilisation: What Ancient Mesopotamia Tells Us about India (12/28/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The Indian Subcontinent had some of the oldest cities in the world – but we know almost nothing about the urban culture of the Indus Valley, especially compared to its contemporaries in ancient Mesopotamia. In our last episode of 2020, Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan take a step back to see what the origins […]
  • Eye on China: 120 FDI Proposals – LAC Talks Stalled – Nepal Intrigue – EU Deal Stumbles – PLA’s 2020 Perspective – Democratic Life Meeting (12/28/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties It’s been a slow news week in terms of the bilateral India-China relationship. India’s MEA said this week that the next round of military talks between the two sides could be held soon. […]
  • Amazon, Facebook, Google and the question of trust (12/26/2020) by Ajit Ranade - In the season of Secret Santa, and last-minute Christmas shopping or new year’s gifts, the option of shopping with e-commerce is a godsend. Read the full article on Mumbai Mirror
  • Hand Me the Paper #1 (12/25/2020) by Rohan Seth - As a tech policy analyst, I do a fair bit of reading. I read 52 books last year and am doing it again this year. Starting this year, I also plan on reading more academic papers around tech and policy. Recording my readings and (sometimes, observations + annotated copies on this newsletter). Please do recommend papers and share […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: A Rare Earths Strategy for India (12/24/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - Download the Discussion Document as a PDF. Post-pandemic geopolitical and economic trends offer a precious opportunity for India to emerge as a rare earths supplier for the world. This discussion document lays out a prioritisation framework and a strategy for India to do that. We recommend that the Government of India should: Create a new […]
  • All Things Policy: Quad and the Semiconductor Value Chain (12/24/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The semiconductor value chain is one of the most diverse supply chains in the tech world. No one country has been successful in having a completely domestic supply chain. Could collaborations within international groupings such as the Quad improve supply chain resilience?. Anirudh Kanisetti talks to Pranay Kotasthane and Rohan Seth about how such […]
  • All Things Policy: How Can Citizens Make Cities Better? (12/23/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan -  While Indians lavish attention on general and state elections, democracy at the municipal tends to be ignored or hijacked by extraneous issues. In this episode, Suman Joshi, programme manager for Takshashila’s Graduate Certificate in Public Policy, makes the case for ‘active citizenship’ as a possible way of engaging in city-level issues and fixing India’s […]
  • The next step for Quad: A dialogue on high tech (12/22/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - This article was first published in Hindustan Times. Views are personal. T-12 is the new G-7. We are not talking about your airport boarding gates. T-12, Tech-10, Democracy-10 are some proposed multilateral mechanisms to enable international cooperation in technology governance. Cooperation, however, won’t be easy because there is significant dissonance even amongst democracies on issues […]
  • All Things Policy: Should AYUSH Doctors Perform Surgeries? (12/22/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - A recent notification from the Ministry of AYUSH says post-graduate AYUSH doctors will be trained to perform 39 types of surgeries. The notification has caused discontent among modern medicine doctors and led them to go on strike. Anirudh Kanisetti talks with Shambhavi Naik and Sunila Dixit about the decision and what it means for the […]
  • Why India needs two maritime theatres of command, not one (12/22/2020) by Nitin Pai - Without doubt, the appointment of a Chief of Defence Staff and the decision to reorganise the armed forces into joint theatre commands are the most significant defence reforms in independent India. The defence ministry and the top military leadership deserve commendation for moving to implement the changes quickly, in the face of multiple challenges: a pandemic, confrontation with China, upsurge in conflict […]
  • Eye on China: Border Talks – Huawei Decision – EU Deal & Resolution – 2021 Economic Agenda – Wang on US Ties (12/21/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties Let’s begin with the tensions in Ladakh. For the first time since September 30, both sides held a meeting of the Working Mechanism for Consultation and Coordination (WMCC) on border affairs. […]
  • Decoding the DC-Brussels-Beijing geopolitical triangle (12/21/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Joe Biden’s election as the United States (US) president has led to talk of greater coordination between Washington and Brussels over China. In early November, European Union (EU) foreign affairs chief Josep Borrell was quick to call for “a coherent and robust China stance” between the transatlantic allies. Biden, meanwhile, has promised to consult traditional […]
  • All Things Policy: Europe’s China Dilemma (12/21/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Even as incoming US President Joe Biden vows to craft a “coherent strategy” on China, the European Union is trying to clinch a trade deal with Beijing. How do Europeans view the rise of China? And how can Europe balance its American alliance with its desire for strategic autonomy? Manoj Kewalramani unpacks the dynamics of […]
  • V-shaped recovery anticipated, but it’s the human capital base of economy that needs care (12/21/2020) by Ajit Ranade - Macroeconomic winds are blowing favourably as we enter the New Year. Stock markets are at an all-time high. Share price indices are up nearly 60 per cent from their lows of March. The stock market is supposed to be a harbinger of economic times to come, so clearly it is indicating a strong revival. Liquidity […]
  • We must strengthen social trust for truly effective cyber security (12/20/2020) by Nitin Pai - Had it not been for over-ambition or arrogance on the part of the hackers—allegedly linked to Russian intelligence agencies—in attacking FireEye, a leading private cyber-security firm, it might have taken the world longer to discover that thousands of government bodies, corporations and even think-tanks around the world had been compromised for months. The culprits had […]
  • Let 2021 be the Year of Empathy (12/19/2020) by Ajit Ranade - It has been a helluva year. Full of tragic struggle against a deadly invisible virus. So many loved ones lost, so sudden. Not even being allowed to see the dying patient. Friends and well-wishers reduced to sending heartfelt condolences by text messages. Of the city’s migrant workers and families walking for a thousand kilometres to […]
  • Watch on Japan | #7 Rising corona cases – “Go To travel” suspended – Expanding missile defense – Digital & Green initiative stimulus packages (12/18/2020) by Divya Suresh - Watch on Japan | #7 Rising corona cases – “Go To travel” suspended – Expanding missile defense – Digital & Green initiative stimulus packages By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 1st Dec – 15th Dec. ● Amidst rapidly increasing coronavirus cases, Japan emerges as the only G7 country to have contained COVID-19 without strict measures. ● Suga […]
  • All Things Policy: What are China’s Lunar Ambitions? (12/18/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - China’s Change 5 mission returned to Earth after a 23-day mission to the moon during which it collected two kilograms of lunar samples. What does this mission tell us about China’s lunar program? And how does India’s own moon exploration program stack up? Pradeep Mohandas talks to Aditya Ramanathan.
  • All Things Policy: Surprises in the National Family Health Survey (12/17/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare released the findings of the first phase of the National Family Health Survey 5. While indicators on family planning and vaccination have improved, the trends of nutrition are concerning. Anirudh Kanisetti talks to Sunila Dixit and Shambhavi Naik about the possible reasons behind the increase in undernutrition among […]
  • China’s Economy May Be ‘Slowing Down’, But Don’t Write Off BRI Yet (12/16/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Ever since it was launched, there’s been a raging debate about the sustainability of China’s Belt and Road Initiative (BRI). Conventionally, these conversations take shape depending on where you stand. In other words, depending on one’s ideological and geopolitical prism, BRI is either a grand strategic plan that is reshaping the global political and economic […]
  • Are Tech Platforms Doing Enough to Combat ‘Super Disinformers’? (12/16/2020) by Prateek Waghre - This is an excerpt from an op-ed published on TheQuint. On 2 December, Twitter labeled multiple tweets – including one by the head of the Bharatiya Janata Party’s IT Cell Amit Malviya – which included an edited video clip from the ongoing farm law protests under its Synthetic and Manipulated Media policy. At the time […]
  • All Things Policy: Is the FTC Suit Against Facebook Fair? (12/16/2020) by Anupam Manur - The US Federal Trade Commission is suing Facebook for its acquisitions of WhatsApp and Instagram. Is Facebook monopolising the personal social networking marketplace? Anupam Manur and Rohan Seth weigh the evidence and debate whether the FTC action is fair.
  • Space Matters #6 (12/15/2020) by Aditya Pareek - At a glance: In an eventful fortnight, the US has published a new National Space Policy. China is expecting its lunar sample retrieval mission to land back on Earth in a few days. The US military is rechristening its bases for its Space Force. A  Dutch-New Zealand company will now conduct test flights of its […]
  • Is India really closer to achieving sanitation goals? (12/15/2020) by Sunila Dixit - This article was first published in Deccan Herald. Views are personal. While the whole world is grappling with the COVID-19 pandemic, there is another public health issue which needs to be addressed with equal rigour and that is of sanitation. The WHO, in collaboration with UNICEF, released a report in November, on the state of […]
  • Indians debate too much democracy. But there’s not a whimper for ‘too little republic’ (12/15/2020) by Nitin Pai - The debate that Niti Aayog CEO Amitabh Kant unwittingly triggered over the extent of democracy in India was passionate, lively and largely beside the point. What is of utmost and urgent importance at this time is the plummeting level of rule-of-law and rule-by-law in the country. We have ‘too little republic’ amid growing, even competing majoritarianisms […]
  • Eye on China: Maldives Debt – No Niceties – EU & NATO – Xi on National Security – Antitrust Action – Annual Diplomacy Talk – Export Boost – LGFV Debt (12/15/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties India’s External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar has made a number of public comments this week about the relationship with China. First, speaking at a webinar by the Lowy Institute, an Australian […]
  • All Things Policy: India-China Ties: The Strategic Dimension (12/15/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani -  Indian Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar said this week that the relationship with China had been “significantly damaged” this year. In fact, as winter sets in, multiple rounds of talks at the Corps Commander level have failed to result in disengagement and de-escalation in eastern Ladakh. In this episode, Manoj Kewalramani talks to Lt. General […]
  • All Things Policy: Bear’s Den: Why Does Russia Want A Naval Base in the Red Sea? (12/14/2020) by Aditya Pareek -  Russia is planning to lease a naval base in Sudan for at least 25 years. Aditya Pareek talks to Aditya Ramanathan about Moscow’s underlying ambitions, the geopolitics driving this move, and the state of Russia’s fleet, especially its flagship Admiral Kuznetsov. Samuel Ramani analyses Russia’s Sudan plans: https://rusi.org/commentary/russia-port-sudan-naval-base-power-play-red-sea A new biography of legendary Soviet […]
  • Don’t take the bat home, yet! (12/14/2020) by Rohan Seth - This article was first published in Deccan Herald. Views are personal. In a pre-pandemic world, winters in the Seth household used to be filled with gully cricket. Spending cold weekend mornings at a park with your friends was one of life’s small luxuries for as long as I can remember. More often than not, games would not […]
  • The world is changing. India needs to get its priorities right (12/14/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - With Covid-19, the most common phrase in every webinar on geopolitics is the “new world order”. This phrase is used to describe periods of history with dramatic change in balance of power between nation-states. In its most recent avatar, the new world order has been on the anvil since 2007. China’s hostile and rapid rise, […]
  • Mumbai to Marrakech | A newsletter on the Middle East | Edition 5 | Are we counting days to the end of Qatar’s blockade? (12/12/2020) by Madhuvanthi Srinivasan - Mumbai to Marrakech Edition 5: December 9, 2020 By Madhuvanthi Srinivasan Are we counting days to the end of Qatar’s blockade? On Friday, Saudi Arabia’s Foreign Minister Prince Faisal bin Farhan al Saud- hinting at a possible resolution of the dispute with Qatar- said, “We have made significant progress in the last few days thanks […]
  • A firebrand farmer leader (12/12/2020) by Ajit Ranade - During the current farmers’ agitation there was much scorn heaped on a farmer who had the audacity to speak in polished English to journalists. Read more at Mumbai Mirror
  • Making democracy work with ‘active citizenship’ (12/12/2020) by Suman Joshi - ‘Dance of democracy’ and ‘festival of democracy’ are some of the catchphrases used for elections in India which are characterised by noisy sloganeering and a festive atmosphere. However, this enthusiasm seems to be restricted to the Parliamentary elections and to a lesser extent to the state Assembly elections. In the last few weeks, Hyderabad saw […]
  • India Needs a More Transparent Approach To Space Situational Awareness (12/11/2020) by Aditya Pareek - The recent, barely avoided collision between India’s Cartosat 2F and Russia’s Kanopus V satellites highlights the need for transparent space situational awareness (SSA) in India. Information about the close call only became public after a tweet by Roscosmos – the Russian state space corporation – that went into specifics about the incident. The response of […]
  • All Things Policy: Is India Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine Soon? (12/11/2020) by Shambhavi Naik -  Vaccines are being approved for emergency use in countries like the UK and Canada. Can India do the same? Sunila Dixit talks to Shambhavi Naik about the status of various vaccine candidates, a planned app to ease tracking of vaccine deployment, and other developments on the COVID-19 vaccine front.
  • All Things Policy: Could Spies Avert the Next Pandemic? (12/10/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan -  As threats from disease outbreaks and ecological disasters grow, should intelligence agencies be tasked with tracking them? What are the potential benefits and pitfalls of such a move? Takshashila’s director Nitin Pai joins distinguished fellow and former Special Secretary in the Research & Analysis Wing, Anand Arni, to debate these matters in a conversation […]
  • All Things Policy: Is Corporate Ownership of Banks a Good Idea? (12/9/2020) by Sarthak Pradhan -  An internal working group set up by RBI recommended allowing corporate houses to own and operate banks. Sarthak Pradhan joins Saurabh Modi to discuss the reasoning behind the move and the new challenges it could create.
  • Bharat Bandh — India’s slide into constitutional grey zone where politics decides right or wrong (12/8/2020) by Nitin Pai - It is nearly impossible to apply objective constitutional principles to determine rights and wrongs with respect to the ongoing farmers’ protests. And this should concern patriotic Indians. Ordinarily, coercive public protests and today’s Bharat Bandh cannot be considered constitutional methods and would fall into the category of the “grammar of anarchy” that Dr. B.R. Ambedkar […]
  • A formidable challenge (12/8/2020) by Ajit Ranade - In the last week of November, the government confirmed that India was officially in a recession, possibly for the first time in modern history. The technical definition of a recession is when the economy contracts for two successive quarters, ie three month periods. Read more at Orissa Post.
  • All Things Policy: The Death of a Scientist and the Future of Iran’s Nuclear Programme (12/8/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - The killing of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh has dimmed prospects for a renewed nuclear deal with Iran. Will US President-elect Joe Biden be able to resume talks? And how will the killing affect India’s relationship with Iran? Manoj Kewalramani talks to Dr. Hina Pandey, Associate Fellow at the Centre for Air Power Studies. Dr. […]
  • All Things Policy: Does One Nation, One Election Make Sense? (12/7/2020) by Prasanna Naidu - Recently, on the Constitution Day, the Prime Minister called for replacing current election cycles with simultaneous elections. While this is not a new idea, does it solve the challenges of holding several elections? And are there better solutions? Prasanna Naidu and Pranay Kotasthane discuss the “one election” idea and some possible alternatives to it. Link […]
  • Anticipating the Unintended #92: India’s Marathon (12/7/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - This newsletter is really a weekly public policy thought-letter. While excellent newsletters on specific themes within public policy already exist, this thought-letter is about frameworks, mental models, and key ideas that will hopefully help you think about any public policy problem in imaginative ways. It seeks to answer just one question: how do I think about a […]
  • Intelligence agencies must track ecological threats and epidemics (12/6/2020) by Nitin Pai - After news of an unusual ‘pneumonia’ outbreak was confirmed on 31 December 2019, the Taiwanese government immediately initiated control measures that ensured that the island nation remained relatively unscathed by the covid-19 pandemic. The country of 24 million has suffered a mere 686 cases to date. Public accounts describe Taiwanese authorities as having found out […]
  • Eye on China: Wei’s Visit – Tech Leap – DoT Invites Huawei – Party’s PLA – Bank Reform – China-EU-US – Backing Wolf Warriors – COVID-19 Investigations (12/6/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties It’s still not clear when India and China will be engaging in the next round of talks along the LAC. New Delhi is apparently waiting for “certain clarifications” on the disengagement […]
  • The PLA Insight: China-India Dispute; US-China ESRC Annual Report; NIDS Annual Report: Cyber, Space and MCF; Taiwan; SCS (12/5/2020) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: China-India Dispute It’s been eight months since the Sino-Indian border stand-off started in the eastern Ladakh region. Since then, there have been eight Corps Commander-level meetings between the two sides with no reported progress on the ground. The eighth meeting was held in the first week of November 2020, and the […]
  • The union’s nose truly in states’ tent (12/5/2020) by Ajit Ranade - When the prime minister announced PM Kisan, which pays Rs 6,000 per farming household per year, it was welcomed by all. It is a direct benefit transfer to those who toil to produce food for us. Where are these farmer households? They are not spread uniformly across the country. So the money from the PM […]
  • Mumbai to Marrakech | A newsletter on the Middle East | Edition 4 | The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Iran, Israel, the nuclear deal & the world (12/4/2020) by Madhuvanthi Srinivasan - Mumbai to Marrakech Edition 4: December 2, 2020 By Madhuvanthi Srinivasan The assassination of Mohsen Fakhrizadeh, Iran, Israel, the nuclear deal & the world Farnaz Fassihi, an Iranian journalist with the New York Times, rightly tweeted the state of Iran in 2020. She said, “The year 2020 for Iran started with the assassination of its […]
  • China, COVID and Convection (12/4/2020) by Guest Post Takshashila - It was just the typical day; I come back from office, greeted by a steaming hot tea cup. This was followed by a de-brief of the day’s activities with emphasis on the tasks which remain undone. As I sat down for channel surf, newsreaders were happily sensationalising the ban on 118 Chinese apps. It seemed […]
  • MisDisMal-Information Edition 26 : Of Anti-vaxxing eloquent, doom profiting, political superspreaders and the ‘Right’ kind of social media (12/3/2020) by Prateek Waghre - This is an excerpt from Edition 26 of MisDisMal-Information:  For the complete edition, go to: Of Anti-vaxxing eloquent, doom profiting, political superspreaders and the ‘Right’ kind of social media Anti-vaxxing Eloquence Let me start with asking you a question. Do you believe there is an ‘antivaxxers movement’ in India? A year ago, I would have laughed […]
  • Watch on Japan | #6 Speculation over Snap election – Wang Yi visits Japan – Spike in COVID-19 cases – South Korea’s move to patch up diplomatic relationship (12/3/2020) by Divya Suresh - Watch on Japan | #6 Speculation over Snap election – Wang Yi visits Japan – Spike in COVID-19 cases – South Korea’s move to patch up diplomatic relationship By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 15th Nov – 30th Nov. ● Japan is likely to declare a state of emergency, with a spike in the number of COVID-19 […]
  • All Things Policy: Guidelines for Cab Aggregators: The good, the bad, and the unnecessary (12/3/2020) by Anupam Manur - The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has issued new Motor Vehicle Aggregators guidelines. These have some serious implications for companies like Uber and Ola. Rohan Seth talks to Anupam Manur about what the fine print really means for both riders and drivers. Link to the guidelines: https://morth.nic.in/sites/default/files/notifications_document/Motor%20Vehicle%20Aggregators27112020150046.pdf
  • Novel platform regulation ideas government can adopt (12/2/2020) by Guest-post - In early November 2020, the Union Government passed a notification stating that news and current affairs content on online platforms would be brought under the jurisdiction and control of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (I&B ministry). This means that the I&B ministry will moderate content on intermediaries, such as social media platforms (Facebook, Twitter), […]
  • All Things Policy: Dropping Out of RCEP: An Opportunity Lost for India (12/2/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - For a larger regional and global presence, India needs to be pro-active in joining free trade agreements. Dropping out of RCEP is an opportunity lost to push the Indian industry towards greater competitiveness. Anupam Manur and Manoj Kewalramani examine what this means for India’s trade strategy and why Delhi must change its protectionist stance.
  • Modi govt must sweat in Parliament to avoid bleeding on street. Farmers’ protest shows why (12/1/2020) by Nitin Pai - One lesson of civilised, constitutional politics is that the more you sweat in parliament, the less you bleed on the streets (or indeed, the jungles). The Narendra Modi government could have avoided farmer unrest and protests had it adopted a broad-based social consultation process and taken its time to put the farm bills through the […]
  • Guiding the Strategic Rudder (12/1/2020) by Prakash Menon - Political guidance for India’s strategic rudder is being tested by China’s Great Power ambitions. In Ladakh, disengagement and de-escalation remain on ice. An eyeball to eyeball confrontation continues, one that is pregnant with possibilities of sudden eruptions that could dwarf the Galwan incident in terms of force exchange and casualties. The deployment of military forces […]
  • Anticipating the Unintended #90: “Politics is the Art of the Possible” (12/1/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - This newsletter is really a weekly public policy thought-letter. While excellent newsletters on specific themes within public policy already exist, this thought-letter is about frameworks, mental models, and key ideas that will hopefully help you think about any public policy problem in imaginative ways. It seeks to answer just one question: how do I think about a […]
  • All Things Policy: Lessons to Learn on Big Tech Regulation (12/1/2020) by Atish Padhy -  Both the US and Europe have attempted to regulate ‘Big Tech’ effectively. Soon, it will be India’s turn to work out new ground rules for these novel technologies and business practices. Atish Padhy and Saurabh Modi join Anirudh Kanisetti to discuss what India should learn from the Western experience, and how can it approach […]
  • Space Matters #5 (11/30/2020) by Aditya Pareek - The Great Game for Space: The UK is setting up a Space Command but not at the cost of its conventional defence capabilities According to a report by Janes, the UK is setting up a new Space Command as a joint command structure with all branches of the UK’s Military and the wider Ministry of […]
  • All Things Policy: Should 2020 be a Zero Year for Education? (11/30/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The COVID-19 pandemic has worsened inequalities in India’s education sector. While many schools and colleges have resorted to online classes, millions of students struggle to get access to the required technology. Should India consider declaring 2020 a zero year, requiring all students to repeat this academic year in 2021-22? Saurabh Modi and Atish Padhy […]
  • Why It Is a Bad Idea for the MIB to Moderate Online Content (11/29/2020) by Guest Post Takshashila - This article was written by Nirali Trivedi, student of the GCPP (Tech and Policy) Programme and Rohan Seth, policy analyst, technology. The Central Government has, with effect from 9 November 2020, brought under the jurisdiction and control of the Ministry of Information and Broadcasting (MIB)  news and current affairs content on online platforms. This means […]
  • Eye on China: EU Outreach – Poverty Goal – AI Patents – Tech Rules – Covid Origin – ‘Coopetition’ Offer (11/29/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties It’s been a relatively quiet week. It’s still not clear when the next round of formal talks between military commanders will be held. But in the meantime, there are some comments […]
  • Water Cannons Can’t Douse Their Anger (11/28/2020) by Ajit Ranade - In September, the central government passed three laws to give more freedom to farmers. Mind you that agriculture is a state subject and farm policies are best left to individual states, as each state has a different mix of farmer issues and circumstances. Read the full article in the Mumbai Mirror
  • The PLA Insight: PLA’s New Operational Doctrine; Sino-Indian Border Dispute; China & Bhutan; Taiwan; China Reading Thomas Schelling, etc. (11/27/2020) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: PLA’s New Operational Doctrine The Central Military Commission issued a new operational doctrine for the PLA which went into effect on November 7, 2020. The latest operation doctrine is called “Outline of Joint Operations for the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (Trial)”  中国人民解放军联合作战纲要(试行). This is only the fifth time that the PLA has changed its operational doctrine […]
  • All Things Policy: How Effective Are the New COVID Vaccines? (11/27/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  How is vaccine effectiveness calculated? Should ministers be part of vaccine clinical trials? Sunila Dixit is joined by Ameya Paleja and Shambhavi Naik to discuss the latest developments in vaccines to combat COVID-19. Ask us your questions about COVID-19 vaccines by emailing us at research@takshashila.org or tweet to us @TakshashilaInst
  • The wrong way to regulate disinformation (11/27/2020) by Prateek Waghre - This article originally appeared in Deccan Herald. When the Kerala Governor signed a controversial Ordinance, now withdrawn, proposing amendments to the Kerala Police Act, there was understandably a significant amount of criticism and ire directed at the state government for a provision that warranted a three-year jail term for intentionally and falsely defaming a person […]
  • Not the time for RBI to be adventurous. If bank ownership isn’t broken, don’t try to fix it (11/26/2020) by Nitin Pai - The Reserve Bank of India’s Internal Working Group startled everyone last week when it recommended that “large corporate/industrial houses may be allowed as promoters of banks only after necessary amendments to the Banking Regulation Act, 1949 (to prevent connected lending and exposures between the banks and other financial and non-financial group entities); and strengthening of […]
  • All Things Policy: How Not To Regulate Disinformation (11/26/2020) by Prateek Waghre -  The Kerala State government has backed down from amending its Police Act to include imprisonment for social media posts considered “offensive” or “defamatory”. But different efforts to tackle disinformation across the country throughout 2020 indicate that we risk short-term responses without considering the long-term fall out. In this episode, Rohan Seth talks to Prateek […]
  • What we don’t talk about when we talk about ‘Big Tech’ (11/25/2020) by Atish Padhy - While the world speculates what a Biden administration is likely to look like, those in the technology space, including journalists and researchers, seem to agree that the severe scrutiny of ‘Big Tech’ companies, Amazon, Apple, Google, and Facebook, is likely to continue. As veteran Silicon Valley journalist Casey Newton asserts on the Ezra Klein Show, […]
  • All Things Policy: The World Health Assembly Meets Amid a Pandemic (11/25/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  While the pandemic rages on without end, the 73rd World Health Assembly has passed important resolutions relating to vaccination, food security, and other diseases. Manoj Kewalramani and Sunila Dixit talk about the recent resolutions as well as the controversial resolution passed in May calling for an investigation into WHO handling of the crisis. Referred […]
  • Don’t micromanage (11/24/2020) by Ajit Ranade - This article was published originally in the Orissa Post. You can read the full article here. Nokia was once the world leader in mobile phone handsets. Its largest manufacturing plant was located in Sriperumbudur in India as part of a Special Economic Zone. In a six-year period, it produced more than 500 million handsets, much […]
  • Of regulating information and disorder: MisDisMal-Information Edition 25 (11/24/2020) by Prateek Waghre - This is an excerpt from edition 25 of MisDisMal-Information (Of regulating information and disorder)– For the complete edition, go here. There was a lot of concern over the weekend as Kerala’s Governor gave his assent to an ordinance to amend the Kerala Police Act ostensibly in response to rising information disorder and defamatory attacks on women and […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Surya Prakash BS on Reimagining India’s Revenue (11/24/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, lawyer and accountant Surya Prakash BS joins Pranay Kotasthane to talk about how India’s byzantine revenue system can […]
  • China wants a reset with Biden, but won’t change its approach (11/23/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - There has been much debate about why China was slow to acknowledge Joe Biden’s election victory. It took nearly a week after Biden’s victory speech for China’s foreign ministry to issue formal congratulations. Xi Jinping is among the few world leaders who still hasn’t spoken to Biden. Despite that, Beijing has been watching the unfolding […]
  • Anticipating the Unintended #88: Economics Matters, Capitalism Works (11/23/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - This newsletter is really a weekly public policy thought-letter. While excellent newsletters on specific themes within public policy already exist, this thought-letter is about frameworks, mental models, and key ideas that will hopefully help you think about any public policy problem in imaginative ways. It seeks to answer just one question: how do I think about a […]
  • Eye on China: LAC, FDI, RCEP – Bhutan Village – Nepal’s Politics – Big Defaults – Xi’s Summits – New US Approach – Warning Australia – EU’s Dependence (11/23/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties Over the last two weeks, there have been reports of India and China agreeing to some sort of partial disengagement and de-escalation formula in Eastern Ladakh. It’s all rather sketchy and […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Kunal Singh on Leveraging the India-US Partnership (11/23/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Kunal Singh, a Ph.D. candidate at MIT, joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about how […]
  • Nations are hurting themselves in their big fight with Big Tech (11/22/2020) by Nitin Pai - This article was originally published in Live Mint. Views are Personal. In a recent interview with The Atlantic magazine, Barack Obama described social media as “the single biggest threat to our democracy”, arguing that these platforms had destroyed the common narrative necessary for democracy to function. He held tech companies partly responsible, contending that, “The […]
  • Mumbai to Marrakech | A newsletter on the Middle East | Edition 3 | United States-Israel-Iran and allied tensions (11/21/2020) by Madhuvanthi Srinivasan - Mumbai to Marrakech Edition 3: November 18, 2020 By Madhuvanthi Srinivasan United States-Israel-Iran and allied tensions Al Qaeda’s second highest leader killed in Iran On November 13, the New York Times reported that Al-Qaeda’s second highest leader- Abdullah Ahmed Abdullah who went by the name Abu Mohammed al-Masri- the mastermind of the 1998 U.S embassy […]
  • Atmanirbharta may come at a price (11/21/2020) by Ajit Ranade - This article was originally published in Mumbai Mirror. You can read the full piece here. Bharat Sanchar Nigam Limited (BSNL), which was formed 20 years ago, has more than 12 crore customers – 10 percent of all the telecom subscribers in the country. In landline connections, it has nearly half of the two crore landline […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Shruti Rajagopalan on India’s Strength in Numbers (11/20/2020) by Anupam Manur - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, economist Shruti Rajagopalan joins Anupam Manur to talk about how India’s population is one of its biggest assets. […]
  • Space Matters #4 (11/19/2020) by Aditya Pareek - The Great Game for Space: China’s space tracking ship are seeing increased deployments To match the increased space launch rates , China’s third generation satellite tracking ship the Yuanwang-6 has seen increased deployments. The ship and others in its class act as mobile ground stations and try to crudely fill the gaps in China’s satellite […]
  • Watch on Japan | #5 Science Council Reform – MALABAR Exercise – BIDEN’s Win, Wait & Watch situation for Japan – ASEAN Annual Summit (11/19/2020) by Divya Suresh - Watch on Japan | #5 Science Council Reform – MALABAR Exercise – BIDEN’s Win, Wait & Watch situation for Japan – ASEAN Annual Summit By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 1st Nov –15th Nov. ● Suga calls for Science Council reform. ● The Suga government faces a row of questions over the Science Council and the dispute remains […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Raja Karthikeya on India as an International Mediator (11/19/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Raja Karthikeya, a UN diplomat, joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about how international mediation […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Ameya Naik on India and the Rules-Based International Order (11/18/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Ameya Ashok Naik joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about the rules-based international order. Is […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc – A Strategy to make India a Biotech Leader by 2025 (11/17/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - Download the Discussion SlideDoc in PDF The biotechnology and healthcare sectors will underpin India’s effort to manage the COVID-19 pandemic, revive the economy and maintain long-term economic competitiveness. However, key internal challenges including regulatory opacity, supply chain friction, and shortage of quality talent need to be addressed. This document analyses the biotechnology and healthcare sectors […]
  • Bursting firecrackers on Diwali isn’t the problem. Making it a national and moral issue is (11/17/2020) by Nitin Pai - As I write this, there is a continuous stream of firecrackers outside the window of my Bengaluru apartment: relatively subdued in my immediate vicinity compared to previous years, but nevertheless quite vigorous. It is just as well that the Karnataka government under B.S. Yediyurappa reversed its decision to ban firecrackers — albeit permitting only “green” ones — because […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Alok Prasanna Kumar on Reforming India’s Institutions (11/17/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Alok Prasanna Kumar joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about the issues that India’s institutions […]
  • Can the professor be stopped in India? (11/16/2020) by Rohan Seth - This article was first published in Deccan Herald. Views are personal. If you binge-watch one show this year, let it be Money Heist. I started (and finished) the crime drama last week and have to say my favourite bits were the phone calls between the Professor and the Spanish law enforcement. In case you don’t […]
  • Anticipating the Unintended #86: Production-Linked Subsidies & Decoding Charisma (11/16/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - This newsletter is really a weekly public policy thought-letter. While excellent newsletters on specific themes within public policy already exist, this thought-letter is about frameworks, mental models, and key ideas that will hopefully help you think about any public policy problem in imaginative ways. It seeks to answer just one question: how do I think about a […]
  • China’s semiconductor gold rush: A reality check (11/15/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - The semiconductor industry has become a major front in the US-China tech war. Given that this is a weak link in China’s otherwise impressive technology stack, the US has imposed export controls restricting Chinese semiconductor companies from accessing key equipment, software, and intellectual property. This article was first published in the South China Morning Post. […]
  • The need for a more direct stimulus (11/14/2020) by Ajit Ranade - The finance minister announced a stimulus package called Atmanirbhar 3.0, so-called because it was the third in a series. The total rupee value of this stimulus for the economy is 2.65 trillion. A stimulus is supposed to put money in the pocket of the citizen so that he or she can start spending. That is, […]
  • Managing India’s Defence Expenditure Requires a Whole-of-Government Approach (11/13/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - “We must do something. This is something. Therefore, we must do this.” This logical fallacy, derisively labelled as the politician’s syllogism, accurately explains recent developments to contain defence expenditure in the wake of COVID-19. Balancing between development and defence priorities is a tough act even in the best of times. But the unprecedented economic aftermath […]
  • Mumbai to Marrakech | A newsletter on the Middle East | Edition 2 | Biden & the Middle East (11/13/2020) by Madhuvanthi Srinivasan - Mumbai to Marrakech Edition 2: November 11, 2020 By Madhuvanthi Srinivasan Biden & the Middle East Joe Biden’s nomination as the Democrat candidate for the U.S presidential elections made Middle East observers evaluate his potential policies. Now, with his election to the White House, will Washington’s approach in the Middle East change significantly or will […]
  • Tracking the COVID-19 Vaccine (11/13/2020) by Ameya Paleja - Tracking the COVID-19 Vaccine By Ameya Paleja To contain the COVID-19 pandemic, India has a mammoth task of vaccinating a major share of her population. At Takshashila Institution, we recently recommended a strategy to vaccinate 80% of India’s population by December 2021. If you missed the engaging discussion during our webinar, you can find a […]
  • Flawed regulation can undermine the digital payment ecosystem (11/13/2020) by Anupam Manur - Anupam Manur writes in Hindustan Times on why the limits placed on Unified Payments Interface (UPI) transactions for third-party apps by NPCI is flawed. Systemic risks are automatically lower when consumers, merchants, and third-party app developers are all multi-homing, meaning they simultaneously use more than one app for the same purpose. The UPI ecosystem is radically […]
  • The PLA Insight: The Sino-Indian Disengagement; China’s Next Overseas Base; Taiwan and the US Marines; Veterans Legislation; Newer Construction in the South China Sea (11/13/2020) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: The Sino-Indian Border Disengagement? The eight Corp Commander-level meeting between China and India took place on the Indian side of the Chushul-Moldo Border Personnel meeting point on November 6. The meeting which started at 9.30 am went up to 7 pm. Like the sixth and seventh Corp Commander-level meetings, this too was attended by diplomats […]
  • All Things Policy: Pfizer and the Hunt for a COVID-19 Vaccine (11/13/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  What does Pfizer’s announcement about its COVID-19 vaccine mean? Why did Brazil halt China’s SinoVac vaccine trial? When will Serum Institute’s vaccine be ready? Manoj Kewalramani is joined by Ameya Paleja and Sunila Dixit to talk about progress being made towards workable vaccines for COVID-19.
  • All Things Policy: What India’s Information Ecosystem Can Learn from the US Elections (11/12/2020) by Prateek Waghre -  Information disorder took center-stage in the 2020 US elections, with mass-media and social media platforms both amplifying and containing narratives. What lessons can the information ecosystem in India learn from them? Prateek Waghre is joined by Devika Khandelwal from ‘Logically’ and Himanshi Dahiya from ‘The Quint’ to talk about this. Relevant Links: 1. https://thewire.in/tech/2020-us-elections-information-ecosystem-social-media 2. https://www.logically.ai/articles/bihar-elections-how-reliable-polls […]
  • All Things Policy: How Will Biden Deal With China? (11/11/2020) by Suyash Desai -  Will a Biden administration get tougher on Beijing? Will it ease the pressure? Or will it be more of the same? Manoj Kewalramani and Suyash Desai join Aditya Ramanathan to discuss what the coming years might hold for US-China relations.
  • Economy to Decide Ties (11/10/2020) by Ajit Ranade - Kamala Harris will become the first-ever Vice President of America to have Indian ancestry. Senator Harris’ mother Shyamala Gopalan arrived in the United States at the age of 19 to do her PhD in nutrition and endocrinology at the University of California in Berkeley. Harris has maintained her links with her maternal grandparents and other […]
  • Is the NEP 2020 really transformative? (11/10/2020) by Guest Post Takshashila - Is the NEP 2020 really transformative? By Samhit Reddy The National Education Policy 2020 introduces a slew of reforms and also seems to appreciate the importance of education for social and economic development. Unfortunately, it fails to adequately investigate the causes of the miserable state of education in our country and thus to provide feasible […]
  • All Things Policy: What Ancient Egypt Tells Us About Ourselves (11/10/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Cleopatra, the last active ruler of Ptolemaic Egypt is closer to our time than the Great Pyramid of Giza was to her time. How did ancient Egypt last so long? And how did it combine dynamism with endurance? Anirudh Kanisetti joins Aditya Ramanathan to discuss the origins, ascent, and eventual decline of this astonishing civilization […]
  • EC should allow Biharis in Bengaluru to vote for state polls. US showed every vote matters (11/10/2020) by Nitin Pai - Many of those who followed the drama of the US presidential election last week were struck by the seemingly patchy and disorganised manner in which the votes were counted. This also led to the impression that Joe Biden “caught up” with Donald Trump in the four battleground states that ultimately swung the election in favour of the Democrats. A number […]
  • All Things Policy: What Today’s Submarines Owe to the Cold War and WWII (11/9/2020) by Aditya Pareek -  The cutting edge features in naval submarines today are the legacy of Cold War-era technologies that were, in turn, derived from both Axis and Allied efforts from the 1930s. Suyash Desai and Aditya Pareek discuss the fascinating history of how today’s submarines came to be. You can read Aditya Pareek’s blog post on the […]
  • Anticipating the Unintended #84: Factions Are Natural (11/8/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - India Policy Watch: The Indian State — Too Big or Too Small? Insights on burning policy issues in India — Pranay Kotasthane In edition #23, we tried to answer this question: how to think about the Indian state? Closely related is another question: is the Indian State too big or too small? And as it holds […]
  • India should create bubbles of trust with its geopolitical allies (11/8/2020) by Nitin Pai - A few months ago, this column had argued that the tech war between the United States and China is being fought across a flexible, porous bamboo curtain, and India’s interests lie in staying out of the Sinosphere while creating circles or bubbles of trust “with the US, Japan, Taiwan, Australia, Singapore and South Korea that […]
  • Eye on China: LAC Talks – Xi’s 2035 Plan – Nepal’s Land – ANT Blocked – US Mocked – Aus Coerced – Buddhism Crackdown in Tibet – Covid Origins Probe (11/8/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Eye on China is a weekly bulletin offering news and analysis related to the Middle Kingdom from an Indian interests perspective. I. India-China Ties The eighth round of commander-level talks on the boundary issue was held on Friday. The talks apparently lasted from 9.30 am and ended at about 7 pm. There’s really little that’s […]
  • The PLA Insight: PLA Modernisation by 2027?; Border Dispute; Gwadar Mil Base; Mil Tech- Disruptive Technologies; CJ-100; CMC S & T Commission; PLA & AI Competitions (11/7/2020) by Suyash Desai - I. The Big Story: PLA by 2027: A Modern Army? The Chinese Communist Party (CCP) held the fifth plenary session of the 19th Communist Party Central Committee last week. The primary task was to assess the results of the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) and consider the draft proposal for the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025), but the […]
  • The consent of the loser (11/7/2020) by Ajit Ranade - One of the best speeches of a candidate conceding electoral victory to his rival was that of Senator John McCain in 2008. America had just elected its first ever black President. It was close to midnight on voting day November 4, after a gruelling campaign season that lasted several months. Of course, not all votes […]
  • Mumbai to Marrakech | A newsletter on the Middle East | Edition 1| Erdoğan, Macron & Bad Blood (11/6/2020) by Guest Post Takshashila - Mumbai to Marrakech Edition 1, November 4, 2020. By Madhuvanthi Srinivasan French President Emmanuel Macron’s “Islam is in crisis” comment, his defense for the caricatures republished by Charlie Hebdo & the beheading of French teacher Samuel Paty reignited tensions with Turkish President Recep Tayyıp Erdoğan & the Muslim world, at large. But the Macron-Erdoğan spat […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – Analysis of COVID-19 Serosurveys in India (11/6/2020) by Sunila Dixit - Download the Discussion Document in PDF The Union and various state governments have conducted seroprevalence surveys at national and city/state levels to study the spread of COVID-19. We argue The disparity in estimated cases as per seroprevalence studies and actual detected cases is a result of limited testing capacity and flawed testing strategy. City level sero-surveys can […]
  • All Things Policy: China’s Plan for the Next Five Years (11/6/2020) by Suyash Desai -  China held the fifth plenary session of the 19th Communist Party Central Committee last week. The primary task was to assess the results of the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) and consider the draft proposal for the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025). What were the major takeaways from the plenary session? What are the significant economic, […]
  • SMART and the Challenge of Submarine Hunting (11/5/2020) by Aditya Pareek - The Supersonic Missile Assisted Release of Torpedo tested last month might seem an impressive weapon on paper, but to make it an effective weapon, India will need drastically improve its ability to monitor the oceans depths. The Government of India and DRDO announced on 5 October 2020 that they have successfully tested a Supersonic Missile […]
  • Watch on Japan | #4 The first Diet session- Suga’s Overseas trip- UK-Japan trade deal- Zero carbon emissions by 2050 (11/5/2020) by Divya Suresh - Watch on Japan | #4 The first Diet session- Suga’s Overseas trip- UK-Japan trade deal- Zero carbon emissions by 2050 By Divya Suresh HIGHLIGHTS: 15th Oct – 31st Oct. ● Suga announced short-term, result-oriented domestic policies in the first Diet session, while his foreign policy remains closer to his predecessor. ●The issue of disposal of treated […]
  • A COVID-19 Vaccine Deployment Strategy for India (11/5/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - This paper first appeared in Indian Public Policy Review 2020, 1(2): 42 – 58 by Shambhavi Naik, Ameya Paleja, Mihir Mahajan, Narayan Ramachandran, Sunila Dixit, Rahul Matthan, Nitin Pai and Pranay Kotasthane Abstract Deploying COVID-19 vaccines once they are available is going to be an unprecedented administrative and logistical challenge. This paper proposes a plan to […]

  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc – India’s Opportunity to Displace China in Global Supply Chains (1/13/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion SlideDoc in PDF This assessment proposes a mix of two approaches that the Indian government should adopt in order to attract investments from companies looking to exit China. The first, a geostrategy-led approach, entails working with like-minded partners, particularly focussing on sectors with national security implications. The second, a case-by-case approach, involves […]
  • Journal Article: India’s Theatre Expansion : Use of Sea Power to Balance China’s Rise (1/11/2021) by Suyash Desai - In Indian Public Policy Review’s latest issue, I examine the Sino-Indian problems and argue that development and demonstration of maritime power afford India the best way of managing China in the Indo-Pacific region. Link to the journal article
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: China, India and Doklam in 2020 (1/4/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti - Download the Strategic Assessment as a PDF. India’s conciliatory stance towards China in the aftermath of the 2017 Doklam crisis has led to a deterioration of the strategic situation at the India-Bhutan-China trijunction. Our analysis uses satellite imagery to show that: With China being prevented from extending its constructions westward following the 2017 crisis, the […]
  • The China Challenge – A Blue Paper (12/31/2020) by Aditya Pareek - Download the Blue Paper as a PDF The Takshashila Institution and Hudson Institute hosted The China Challenge online discussion series over six weeks between August 28, 2020, and October 2, 2020. The fundamental question underpinning these discussions was how India and the US can and should respond to China’s increasing assertiveness and growing global ambitions. […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: A Rare Earths Strategy for India (12/24/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - Download the Discussion Document as a PDF. Post-pandemic geopolitical and economic trends offer a precious opportunity for India to emerge as a rare earths supplier for the world. This discussion document lays out a prioritisation framework and a strategy for India to do that. We recommend that the Government of India should: Create a new […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc – A Strategy to make India a Biotech Leader by 2025 (11/17/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - Download the Discussion SlideDoc in PDF The biotechnology and healthcare sectors will underpin India’s effort to manage the COVID-19 pandemic, revive the economy and maintain long-term economic competitiveness. However, key internal challenges including regulatory opacity, supply chain friction, and shortage of quality talent need to be addressed. This document analyses the biotechnology and healthcare sectors […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – Analysis of COVID-19 Serosurveys in India (11/6/2020) by Sunila Dixit - Download the Discussion Document in PDF The Union and various state governments have conducted seroprevalence surveys at national and city/state levels to study the spread of COVID-19. We argue The disparity in estimated cases as per seroprevalence studies and actual detected cases is a result of limited testing capacity and flawed testing strategy. City level sero-surveys can […]
  • A COVID-19 Vaccine Deployment Strategy for India (11/5/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - This paper first appeared in Indian Public Policy Review 2020, 1(2): 42 – 58 by Shambhavi Naik, Ameya Paleja, Mihir Mahajan, Narayan Ramachandran, Sunila Dixit, Rahul Matthan, Nitin Pai and Pranay Kotasthane Abstract Deploying COVID-19 vaccines once they are available is going to be an unprecedented administrative and logistical challenge. This paper proposes a plan to […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc – Submarine Cables: A Maritime National Security Perspective for India (10/21/2020) by Aditya Pareek - Executive Summary: India’s economic recovery and national security in a post COVID-19 world heavily depends on its digital connectivity to the rest of the world. Submarine cables are crucial to ensuring this connectivity. We recommend that India safeguard its submarine cables through: Deployment of an all-encompassing Sound Surveillance System (SOSUS). An increase in sortie rates […]
  • The Primacy of Sea Power in Managing China’s Push for Hegemony in the Indo-Pacific (10/17/2020) by Nitin Pai - Authors: Suyash Desai and Nitin Pai Keywords: Sino-Indian Dispute, Indian Ocean, Indo-Pacific, Indian Navy, PLAN, Partnerships, Sea Denial Abstract: The paper posits that sea power affords India the best way of managing Chinese power in the Indo-Pacific region. While border defences and use of land and air power along the Himalayan land frontiers is essential […]
  • Takshashila Working Paper — Constraining the Pakistani Military-Jihadi Complex In a Post-COVID World (10/5/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - by Pranay Kotasthane This is a draft of a paper published in Scholar Warrior (ISSN: 2319-7331, Autumn 2020), a Centre for Land and Warfare Studies Publication. Download the paper This paper surveys four major developments that impact the Pakistani Military-Jihadi Complex (MJC) in the recent months — change in MJC’s external benefactors, the US-Taliban Peace […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – Ethical Guidelines for Clinical Trials and Research in India (10/1/2020) by Sunila Dixit - Download the Discussion Document in PDF This discussion document proposes a modified set of 8 ethical principles and a guidance questionnaire that researchers and ethics committees can refer to, to ensure that the research is within the ethical boundaries. ICMR’s ethical guidelines of 2017 need to be revised, with more focus on the fundamental ethical […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – An Indian Approach to Navigate China’s Rise (9/28/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion Document in PDF Executive Summary The rise of China as an emerging global power has significant implications for India’s pursuit of its core interests. While old sources of friction between the two countries persist, shifting global power dynamics and technological advancements present new challenges and opportunities. In this backdrop, this report argues […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – BRI in the Post-COVID World: Risks and Responses (9/22/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion Document in PDF This document provides an assessment of China’s changing approach towards the Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) amid the COVID-19 pandemic. The pandemic’s impact on China’s and the world economy along with the intensification of geopolitical tensions between China and the US have amplified certain pre-existing risks while also creating […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: 5G, Huawei & Geopolitics – An Indian Roadmap (9/20/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the report in PDF This report argues that the Indian government must consider the strategic implications of allowing Huawei to have a role in building and operating India’s 5G network infrastructure. While there exists an economic rationale for providing Chinese telecom vendors access to the Indian market, these benefits need to be weighed against […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – Migrant Workers in Indian Cities (9/19/2020) by Guest Editor - Download the Discussion Document in PDF By Ananya Rao This discussion document examines the assimilation of inter-state migrants in India into their host societies and the factors that facilitate and impede this process. While migrant workers face exclusion in urban centres due to a lack of access to basic services and social security and welfare […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc – A COVID-19 Vaccine Deployment Strategy for India (9/8/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - Download the Discussion SlideDoc in PDF by Shambhavi Naik, Ameya Paleja, Mihir Mahajan, Narayan Ramachandran, Sunila Dixit, Rahul Matthan, Nitin Pai and Pranay Kotasthane India should aim to vaccinate 80% of the population by 31st December 2021. There are 4 steps in vaccine deployment: estimate demand, secure vaccine supply, choose delivery channels and conduct post-market […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – A Military Resource Allocation Framework (7/31/2020) by Prakash Menon - Download the Discussion Document in PDF This discussion document proposes a Military Resource Allocation Framework 1.0 (M-RAF 1.0) for the Indian Military. The M-RAF (1.0) is a derivative of the Proposed Theatre Command Model that could serve as a decision support tool for military resource allocation planning and can be adapted to any number of […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: The Doklam Imbroglio (July 2020 Update) (7/16/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - Executive Summary In 2017, the Doklam plateau became a flashpoint for the Asian powers, India and China. China’s tactics in Doklam are clear examples of its general “salami-slicing” strategy, a policy of gradual encroachment onto disputed territory where other claimants are forced to accede to a new status quo tilted in China’s favour. This Discussion […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – COVID-19 Testing Strategy for India (7/9/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - Download this discussion document in PDF Executive Summary The rapidly spreading COVID-19 can be contained only with rapid, accurate testing and isolation of infected individuals. Various types of tests are available, but in India only select tests have been approved for diagnostic purposes. Testing can however be done for purposes beyond diagnosis. Purposes include community […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document- Analysing Digital Platforms’ Responses to COVID-19 Information Disorder (6/26/2020) by Prateek Waghre - By Prateek Waghre and Rohan Seth Download the Discussion Document in PDF. Executive Summary This Discussion Document analyses the responses of digital platforms to the information disorders around COVID-19: During the pandemic, digital platforms may be able to exercise greater discretion in content moderation from increased calls for them to act as arbiters of truth. […]
  • Responding to the Standoff on the LAC in Ladakh (6/19/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - By The Takshashila Geostrategy Team This graphical representation looks at India’s options for responding its standoff with China on the Line of Actual Control (LAC) with the People’s Republic of China. Since China has seized territory, it only needs to hold on to what it has gained to maintain the new status quo. On the […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc – National Security Preparedness & Planning for COVID-19 (6/16/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Download the Discussion SlideDoc in PDF There are four major risks in the ongoing pandemic: the spread of infection, police and armed forces being stretched thin, opportunistic actions by insurgents, criminals, and other States, and finally, collapse of State capacity in India’s extended neighbourhood. These challenges are likely to persist over the 36 months until […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – India’s Theatre Command System: A Proposal (6/12/2020) by Prakash Menon - Download the Discussion Document in PDF This discussion document proposes the structural framework for India’s Theatre Command system with terrain and strategic threats being prime factors. Larger theatre structures facilitate flexible cooperation in greater quantities of military power and concurrent with inter-service integration would cater for centralised joint planning and decentralised application of military power. […]
  • Takshashila Policy Advisory – A Policy Guide to Pooled Testing (6/9/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - By Shambhavi Naik Download the Policy Advisory in PDF Executive Summary: Pooled testing is a valuable tool in the routine surveillance of diseases. However, it is not a substitute for conventional diagnostic testing. The Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) advisory on pooled testing suggests using pooled testing approach in areas of low prevalence of […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: India, COVID-19, and West Asia (6/9/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Download the Strategic Assessment as a PDF. Executive Summary The novel coronavirus has introduced new and highly unpredictable social and political dynamics into West Asia. We argue that: India’s key challenges are securing the return of out-of-work expatriates, protecting those still working in the region and preparing for a reduction in remittance income. India’s key […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc: China’s Maritime Coercion Amid the COVID-19 Pandemic (6/3/2020) by Suyash Desai - Download the Discussion SlideDoc in PDF Executive Summary This document assesses the recent escalation of coercive activities by the People’s Republic of China (PRC) in the South China Sea (SCS) amidst the outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic. There are six explanations for PRC’s recent escalation of coercive behaviour Opportunistic escalation amid pandemic distraction Coercing regional […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Slidedoc: Gene Drives in Infectious Diseases – A Risk Assessment (5/22/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - By Shambhavi Naik Download the Slidedoc in PDF [1.5 MB] Gene drives are being explored for alleviating vector-borne infectious diseases however, the risks of employing them need to be understood. This Slidedoc assesses the potential use of gene drives in India by performing a stage-wise risk assessment of deploying gene drive. Gene drive mosquitoes are […]
  • Recommended Draft Space Activities (Regulation) Bill, 2020 (5/21/2020) by Rahul Matthan - Download the recommended draft bill in PDF. Takshashila’s ‘The New Space Policy 2020‘ proposes a clear policy and regulatory structure that paves the way for growth of the nascent private space sector in India, thus contributing towards national development and advancing the frontiers of science and technology. The recommended Draft Space Activities (Regulation) Bill, 2020 […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc: Increasing COVID-19 Testing Capacity in India (5/15/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - By Shambhavi Naik Executive Summary: The response to the COVID-19 pandemic rests on the ability to test for infected patients quickly and at scale. Exhaustive testing underpins effective containment strategies, helps estimate healthcare requirements and decreases the toll on delivery of essential services exerted by complete lockdowns. However, India’s current testing capacity is of 100,000 […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc: India in the Post COVID-19 World Order (5/7/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - By Pranay Kotasthane, Akshay Alladi, Anirudh Kanisetti, and Anupam Manur Executive Summary COVID-19 is likely to accelerate the competition and confrontation between the US and China, and simultaneously reduce the global authority of both by eroding their absolute power and legitimacy. The relative power scale can tilt in either direction. India and other middle powers […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: Assessing Measures for India to Tackle Biowarfare Threats (5/3/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - By Shambhavi Naik Download the Discussion Document in PDF Gene editing, synthetic biology, and improved delivery systems have reinvigorated the attention to biological weapons. Furthermore, the Biological Weapons Convention has repeatedly failed to agree to a verification mechanism, giving rise to suspicions that state actors may still be experimenting with biological weapons. Further, non-state actors […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: Impact of COVID-19 on the Chinese Armed Forces (4/30/2020) by Suyash Desai - Download the Strategic Assessment document as a pdf Executive Summary This assessment examines the impact of the COVID-19 outbreak on the Chinese People’s Liberation Army (PLA). We argue that: Claims of zero COVID-19 infections in the PLA do not stand up to scrutiny. The outbreak has had a limited, short-term impact on China’s defence industry and […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – China’s Foreign Policy in the Post-Covid World Order: An Assessment (4/29/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion Document in PDF Key Ideas: Regime survival and stability are likely to remain as primary objectives of China’s international engagement. Prolonged economic slowdown, the threat of increased protectionism, and deepening frictions with the US will impinge on this objective. Sino-US ties are likely to continue to deteriorate Middle powers like India, France, […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: Networked Protests & State Responses: The Case of Hong Kong 2019-20 (4/14/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion Document in PDF. Executive Summary Digital technologies and Internet connectivity are enabling rapid mobilisation of large groups of individuals around a common cause. The defining feature of such a Radically Networked Society (RNS) is the scale and pace of its operations. Consequently, RNS movements pose a serious challenge for the hierarchically ordered […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: India and the Saudi-Russia Oil Price War (4/9/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Download the full Strategic Assessment as a PDF. Executive Summary Global oil prices have fallen by about half since early March 2020. On one hand, the coronavirus pandemic is sweeping across the world, and on the other, the world is awash in oil because of the Saudi-Russia dispute over production cuts. This stand-off on oil […]
  • Modi govt needs to open the JAM for public contributions. PM Care alone can’t deliver (3/31/2020) by Nitin Pai - If containing the coronavirus outbreak is the primary national policy prerogative at this time, a close second is the task of providing relief to those who have been hardest hit by the lockdown. With advances in financial inclusion, reliable identification and mass mobile internet, the so-called JAM or Jan Dhan, Aadhaar, Mobile trinity, Indian society […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: The Economics and Politics of Pakistan’s COVID-19 Response (3/28/2020) by Sarthak Pradhan - By Sarthak Pradhan, Sakshi Arora, and Pranay Kotasthane Download the full Strategic Assessment in PDF Executive Summary As of March 27th, Pakistan had the largest number of COVID-19 cases in the subcontinent. This outbreak is likely to slow down Pakistan’s economy and increase its dependence on China in the short-term. Domestically, this has the potential […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: A Framework for Enabling Predictive Genomics to Improve Public Health in India (3/19/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - By Shambhavi Naik and Pavan Srinath Download the Discussion Document in PDF. Heritable genetic diseases, particularly rare diseases, contribute to a significant disease burden in India. In India’s urban areas, congenital malformations and genetic disorders are the third most common cause of mortality in newborns. Rare diseases by themselves are expected to afflict 70-96 million […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Slidedoc– Securing China: An Assessment of Xi’s Military Reforms (3/9/2020) by Suyash Desai - Download the Discussion Slidedoc in PDF Executive Summary China’s President Xi Jinping announced landmark military reforms in late 2015. The reforms aim to convert the People’s Liberation Army (PLA) into a world-class force by 2050, that can achieve China’s national security objectives. This document identifies seven broad areas of the PLA reforms and assesses their […]
  • Takshashila Blue Paper: Governing Tech Platforms in India (2/7/2020) by Prateek Waghre - The Takshashila Institution hosted a roundtable on 24 January 2020 to discuss policy solutions to some of the unique issues in platform marketplaces. Finding the balance between mitigating the harm caused by platforms while ensuring that these businesses continue to provide an enormous amount of social surplus is of paramount importance. This Blue Paper collates […]
  • Takshashila Policy Proposal: The New Space Policy 2020 (1/28/2020) by Utkarsh Narain - Download the proposal in PDF. Executive Summary The New Space Policy 2020 proposes a clear policy and regulatory structure that paves the way for growth of the nascent private space sector in India, thus contributing towards national development and advancing the frontiers of science and technology. Specifically, this paper recommends: Decoupling the policy, regulatory, and […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: PRC’s Influence on Taiwan’s Polity: Instruments & Efficacy (1/8/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Strategic Assessment in PDF Executive Summary Chinese President Xi Jinping has termed the “reunification” of Taiwan with the PRC as “a historic task” that is vital to the rejuvenation of the Chinese nation. For the Communist Party of China, this is a core interest, underscored by the One-China Principle, that goes to the […]
  • Takshashila Blue Paper: A Framework for Governing Human Gene Editing in India (1/5/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - Download the Blue Paper in PDF [430 KB] This Blue Paper was prepared as a result of a roundtable discussion organised by the Takshashila Institution on 15 December 2017, based on the Discussion Document: A Framework for Governing Gene Editing. The discussion document developed an analytical framework to differentiate gene editing technologies into three broad […]
  • Takshashila Review Paper: Space Power and Space Warfare (12/11/2019) by Pranav RS - Download the paper in PDF Executive Summary The modern space age is characterised by low cost access to space. One consequence of this development is increased competition in the military sphere. This review paper examines the current literature on space power and space warfare to explain why technology in both the civilian and military domain […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – An Indian Approach to Navigate China’s Rise (12/5/2019) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion Document in PDF Executive Summary The rise of China as an emerging global power has significant implications for India’s pursuit of its core interests. While old sources of friction between the two countries persist, shifting global power dynamics and technological advancements present new challenges and opportunities. In this backdrop, this report argues […]
  • 4 Lessons for India From China’s October 2019 Military Parade (12/3/2019) by Suyash Desai - With the People’s Republic of China (PRC) marking its 70th founding anniversary on October 1, the grand military parade at Tiananmen Square was the highlight of the celebrations. It showcased China’s newer arms, ammunition, and technology. Over 15,000 personnel, 160 aircraft, and 580 pieces of military equipment participated in the military parade, including sophisticated weaponry such as hypersonic missiles, […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – Modi-Xi Informal Summit: An Indian Interests Agenda (10/7/2019) by Manoj Kewalramani - Download the Discussion Document in PDF Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi will be hosting Chinese President Xi Jinping for an informal summit in the coastal town of Mamallapuram in Tamil Nadu in October 2019. The summit is a timely opportunity to address some of the stressors that are fraying the fabric of the Wuhan spirit […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – A Human Capital Investment Model for India’s National Security System (9/24/2019) by Prakash Menon - Download the Discussion Document in PDF India’s burgeoning defence pensions expenditure is unsustainable and begs immediate action. Starting with the Kargil Review Committee, many solutions have been mooted over the last two decades to address this problem but none of them have fructified. Meanwhile, the expenditure has ballooned after the implementation of the One Rank […]
  • Takshashila Policy Advisory – Comments on the National Guidelines for Gene Therapy Product Development and Clinical Trials (9/24/2019) by Shambhavi Naik - Download the Advisory in PDF This policy advisory contains recommendations and comments in response to the draft National Guidelines for Gene Therapy Product Development and Clinical Trials released by the Indian Council of Medical Research (ICMR) in consultation with the Department of Biotechnology (DBT) and Central Drug Standards Control Organisation (CDSCO) in July 2019. We […]
  • Putting India on the road to becoming an AI superpower (9/15/2019) by Guest Editor - The Indian government has made no secret of its interest in harnessing the power of AI. Over recent years, NITI Aayog has come up with a National Strategy for Artificial Intelligence, the Department of Industrial Policy and Promotion designated an AI task force which came up with its own report, the interim budget earlier this […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document – Jammu & Kashmir: The Way Forward (8/14/2019) by Guest Editor - By the Takshashila Geostrategy Programme Download the Slidedoc in PDF ​Post Article 370 scenario: A worsened security situation in Jammu and Kashmir abetted by Pakistan, exacerbated by the absence of legitimate political channels, a weak economic infrastructure, and an inadequate administrative capacity. Further, this situation is unlikely to change for the better over the next two […]
  • Explaining the Takshashila National Security Doctrine (8/1/2019) by Editor - Download the doctrine here. In the 21st century, India faces challenges of unprecedented scale and complexity that necessitate new ways of thinking about national security. We propose that yogakshema, an idea pioneered in the Arthashastra , should be the guiding light of India’s national security doctrine. Simply put, the State must provide security, kshema, and […]
  • Takshashila Research Publication: Shaping the Military Instrument (7/26/2019) by Prakash Menon - By Lt Gen (Dr) Prakash Menon An edited version of this essay appeared first in the India Foundation Journal Vol. VII Issue No. 4, July-August, 2019 Download the Essay in PDF Unity in diversity provides utmost strength for India’s national developmental process. But diversity also begets divergent perspectives that shelter narrow interests and are naturally […]
  • A National Security Doctrine For India (6/3/2019) by Editor - Download the doctrine here Yogakshema बलं शक्ति: | सुखं सिद्धि:| Strength is power. And well-being is the goal. (Arthashastra, 6:2-31,32) To create and defend a conducive environment for yogakshema (well-being, prosperity, and happiness) of all Indians. At this stage of India’s development, national security is primarily focused on protecting and promoting India’s economic development. a. As […]
  • The Kra Canal: What Does It Mean For India? (4/9/2019) by Manoj Kewalramani - By Manoj Kewalramani, Anirudh Kanisetti, and Kunaal Kini Download the study in PDF A canal along the Isthmus of Kra could alter the strategic calculus for states across Southeast Asia, with China expected to benefit the most. In light of recent discussions around building the canal with the help of Chinese investors, this study examines […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Slidedoc – A Framework to Counter Mobilised Violence (3/19/2019) by Ajay Patri - ​Madhav Chandavarkar, Ajay Patri, and Divij Joshi Mobilised violence is detrimental to the democratic fabric of India. It prevents individuals from enjoying their right to speak, move and conduct business freely. It can also cause injuries and loss of life to bystanders, in addition to significant economic costs from a cessation of economic activity and damage to […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: India’s External Intelligence Agency: Managing the Human Resources Challenge (1/17/2019) by Anand Arni - Executive Summary In India, reform advocacy for the Intelligence community has largely been focused around parliamentary scrutiny over the intelligence agencies and removal of defunct ones. These suggested reforms, however, tend to overlook what is at the core of intelligence – people.  The success of intelligence operation is defined by the capability of officers conducting […]
  • Takshashila Policy Advisory: A Data Protection Framework for India (12/31/2018) by Manasa Venkataraman - The Justice Srikrishna Committee (formally called the Committee of Experts under the Chairmanship of Justice B N Srikrishna) is tasked with framing a robust data protection law for India. In November, 2017, the Committee released the White Paper – exploring the contours of data protection legislation across the world, and called upon stakeholders to comment […]
  • Takshashila Working Paper: The Regressive Nature of Central Transfers for Health (12/19/2018) by Pranay Kotasthane - By Pranay Kotasthane, Devika Kher, Pavan Srinath, and Aashish Chajjer Download the paper in PDF Financing public health in India is a vital challenge. As a response, the Union government transfers funds to the lower tiers of government, specifically meant to improve the public health services. The stated goal of specific transfers is to ensure […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: A Framework for Countering Mobilised Violence (12/4/2018) by Madhav Chandavarkar - Mobilised violence is detrimental to the democratic fabric of India. It prevents individuals from enjoying their right to speak, move and conduct business freely. It can also cause injuries and loss of life to bystanders, in addition to significant economic costs from a cessation of economic activity and damage to property. In this report, ‘mobilised violence’ is defined as an act or series of acts of violence committed by a group with the intent of furthering a political purpose.
  • Takshashila Policy Advisory: Comments to the Draft Personal Data Protection Bill (10/12/2018) by Ajay Patri - By Ajay Patri and Manasa Venkataraman Executive Summary This document contains recommendations and comments in response to the draft Personal Data Protection Bill, 2018 (Bill) released by the Committee of Experts under the Chairmanship of Justice B. N. Srikrishna (Justice Srikrishna Committee) in July 2018. At the outset, we welcome the release of the Bill […]
  • Takshashila Working Paper: China’s Quest For AI Leadership: Prospects and Challenges (10/1/2018) by Manoj Kewalramani - By Manoj Kewalramani Download the paper in PDF Executive Summary In 2017, the Chinese government unveiled a plan to develop the country into the world’s primary innovation centre for artificial intelligence (AI) by 2030. In doing so, it identified AI as a strategic industry, crucial for enhancing economic development, national security and governance. This report […]
  • Takshashila Blue Paper: Justice Srikrishna Committee Documents on Data Protection (8/29/2018) by Ajay Patri - By Manasa Venkataraman and Ajay Patri The Takshashila Institution convened a Roundtable on 10 August 2018 to discuss issues arising from the documents released by the Justice Srikrishna Committee on 27 July 2018. These documents included the report titled A Free and Fair Digital Economy: Protecting Privacy, Empowering Indians and the draft Personal Data Protection Bill, […]
  • Takshashila Review Paper: Regulating Multi-Sided Platforms – Challenges in the Indian Context (8/1/2018) by Anupam Manur - By Anupam Manur Download the paper in PDF [620 KB] Executive Summary Multi-sided platforms possess unique characteristics that differentiate them from a normal market structure. The presence of direct and indirect network effects, high switching costs, price parity clauses, vertical integration, and differentiated pricing structures between the two sides of the platform are unique to […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Document: Deriving India’s Strategies for a New World Order (7/9/2018) by Anirudh Kanisetti - By Anirudh Kanisetti, Anupam Manur, and Pranay Kotasthane Download the Discussion Document in PDF [1.8 MB] Executive Summary “The New World Order” is a phrase often used but rarely understood. This discussion document proposes an analytical framework to decode what a New World Order means for India. The document presents a flexible action portfolio to […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: Impact of the Pashtun Tahafuz Movement on Pakistan’s Political Landscape (6/20/2018) by Hamsini Hariharan - By Dr. Sudha Ramachandran, Hamsini Hariharan, and Shibani Mehta Download the Assessment in PDF [1 MB] The Pasthun Tahafuz Movement (PTM), a powerful civil and human rights movement, has rattled Pakistan’s political and military establishment by drawing huge crowds. The merger of the provinces of Khyber-Pakhtunkhwa (KP) and the Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) can […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: India-Bhutan Relationships – Fostering the Friendship (5/7/2018) by Shibani Mehta - By Sudha Ramachandran, Hamsini Hariharan, and Shibani Mehta Download the Assessment in PDF [2.5 MB] Executive Summary The Doklam crisis is evidence that the regional security dynamic in the neighbourhood is being challenged. As Bhutan readies for its third National Assembly elections later this year, India must act to address Bhutanese concerns that are weakening the […]
  • Takshashila Discussion Slidedoc: India’s China Reset – An Assessment (4/27/2018) by Manoj Kewalramani - By Manoj Kewalramani Download the Assessment in PDF [1.1 MB] Executive Summary Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi is visiting Wuhan for a two-day informal meeting with Chinese President Xi Jinping on April 27 and 28, 2018. The two leaders are expected to discuss “issues of overarching, long-term and strategic importance” along with changes in the […]
  • Takshashila Strategic Assessment: Political Developments in Sri Lanka (4/10/2018) by Hamsini Hariharan - By Sudha Ramachandran, Hamsini Hariharan, and Shibani Mehta Download the Assessment in PDF [700 KB] Executive Summary The victory of the former President Mahinda Rajapaksa’s Sri Lanka Podujana Peramuna (SLPP) in the local bodies’ elections in Sri Lanka in February reflects public dissatisfaction with the ruling coalition’s performance. It also indicates that Rajapaksa continues to […]
  • Takshashila Discussion SlideDoc: Assessing China’s Engagement in the Indian Subcontinent (3/10/2018) by Anirudh Kanisetti - By Anirudh Kanisetti, Hamsini Hariharan, and Manoj Kewalramani Download the Discussion Slidedoc in PDF [1.4 MB] This Slidedoc presents a strategic framework that provides insights into China’s behaviour and highlights various alternative policies that China may consider for engagement in the Indian Subcontinent. An underlying assumption is that China is modeled as a rational actor […]
  • Takshashila Policy Advisory: A Data Protection Framework for India (2/21/2018) by Manasa Venkataraman - By Rahul Matthan, Manasa Venkataraman, and Ajay Patri Download the Policy Advisory in PDF [650 KB] The Justice Srikrishna Committee (formally called the Committee of Experts under the Chairmanship of Justice B N Srikrishna) is tasked with framing a robust data protection law for India. In November, 2017, the Committee released the White Paper – […]
  • India’s Strategies for a New World Order (1/12/2018) by Anirudh Kanisetti - By Anirudh Kanisetti, Anupam Manur, Pranay Kotasthane, and Akshay Alladi Download the Discussion Document in PDF [5 MB] Over the next quarter century, the international order is likely to change considerably. A new geopolitical and macroeconomic context will necessitate a flexible strategy to maximise India’s national interest. In this Discussion Document, an analytical framework is […]
  • Takshashila Working Paper: Differentiating Unintended Consequences from Unanticipated – A Policy Framework (12/19/2017) by Pranay Kotasthane - By Pranay Kotasthane and Vinay Kumar Singh Download the Working Paper in PDF [640 KB] Abstract The views of de Zwart (2015) related to the conflation of terms, “unintended consequences” and “unanticipated consequences”, the necessity to maintain their distinction and the need to take into account the “unintended but anticipated” consequences as a separate category […]
  • Takshashila Policy Advisory: Privacy, Security and Ownership of Data in the Telecom Sector (10/18/2017) by Manasa Venkataraman - By Rahul Matthan, Manasa Venkataraman, and Ajay Patri Download the policy advisory in PDF [418 KB] This policy advisory is a curated set of responses to the discussion paper issued by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, seeking comments and suggestions on the creation of data protection laws. Executive Summary There is an urgent need […]
  • Takshashila Policy Advisory: Privacy, Security and Ownership of Data in the Telecom Sector (10/18/2017) by Manasa Venkataraman - This policy advisory is a curated set of responses to the discussion paper issued by the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India, seeking comments and suggestions on the creation of data protection laws. Executive Summary There is an urgent need to bring forth effective data protection norms in India. However, these norms must be introduced and […]
  • Assessment: The hostage handover in Pakistan (10/17/2017) by Anand Arni - By Anand Arni Download the assessment here [0.3MB PDF] This assessment takes a closer look at the events leading to the release of the Boyle-Coleman family from captivity in Pakistan. Key judgments from the assessment are: it is likely that this release is an offering presented by Pakistan before the Mattis/Tillerson visit to Pakistan. A clearer indication […]
  • Discussion Document: A Framework for Governing Gene Editing (10/13/2017) by Anirudh Kanisetti - By Madhav Chandavarkar, Anirudh Kanisetti, Shambhavi Naik, and Ajay Patri Download the Discussion Document in PDF [1.2 MB] Executive Summary Gene editing offers many benefits. They range from basic research that can enhance the scientific understanding of gene functions to practical applications like improved healthcare and agricultural production. At the same time, like other developing […]
  • Takshashila Blue Paper: Charting a New Framework for Data Protection in India (10/11/2017) by Manasa Venkataraman - Download the Blue Paper in PDF [480 KB[ This Blue Paper was prepared as a result of a roundtable discussion organised by the Takshashila Institution on 4 September 2017, based on the Discussion Document, Beyond Consent: A New Paradigm for Data Protection. The discussion document brings forth a rights-based model (Rights Model) to help secure […]
  • Takshashila Blue Paper: Charting a New Framework for Data Protection in India (10/11/2017) by Manasa Venkataraman - This Blue Paper was prepared as a result of a roundtable discussion organised by the Takshashila Institution on 4 September 2017, based on the Discussion Document, Beyond Consent: A New Paradigm for Data Protection. The discussion document brings forth a rights-based model (Rights Model) to help secure the interests of a data subject sharing his […]
  • Policy Proposal: Governing Gene Editing — An Analytical Framework (9/23/2017) by Shambhavi Naik - By Madhav Chandavarkar, Anirudh Kanisetti, Ajay Patri, and Shambhavi Naik Download the Slides in PDF [460 KB] Gene editing, the idea of modifying genes, has long been the stuff of science fiction. But recent advancements in genetic editing has brought the discourse surrounding genetic editing to the forefront. Much of the discourse on gene editing, […]
  • Book Chapter — The other Pakistan: understanding the military-jihadi complex (9/11/2017) by Pranay Kotasthane - By Pranay Kotasthane, Guru Aiyar, and Nitin Pai This is a draft of a chapter submitted to Routledge Handbook of Contemporary Pakistan, August 2017, Edited by Aparna Pande, ISBN: 9781138903715 Download the book chapter [PDF] Pakistan is not one geopolitical entity, but two: the putative state (represented currently by a civilian government), and the military—jihadi […]
  • Discussion Document – Beyond Consent: A New Paradigm for Data Protection (7/20/2017) by Rahul Matthan - By Rahul Matthan Download the Discussion Document in PDF [800 KB] EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Data protection is confined by consent (Consent Model). Once a data subject’s consent is obtained, a data controller is free to collect, process and use such data for the specified purpose and will not be liable for any consequences that might result […]
  • Analysis: Resolving the India-China Standoff at Doka La (7/7/2017) by Nitin Pai - By The Takshashila Geostrategy Team The situation in the India-China border looks tense as the region is experiencing one of the longest impasse between Indian and Chinese troops. If the situation escalates into a potential conflict, the costs for both India and China are significantly high. This graphical representation provides an analysis of how India […]
  • Beyond Consent: A New Paradigm for Data Protection in India (7/7/2017) by Manasa Venkataraman - EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Data protection is confined by consent (Consent Model). Once a data subject’s consent is obtained, a data controller is free to collect, process and use such data for the specified purpose and will not be liable for any consequences that might result from its actions. This places the onus on an individual to […]
  • Working Paper: A Framework to Model the India—Pakistan Conflict Escalation (6/14/2017) by Pranay Kotasthane - By Pranay Kotasthane Download the paper in PDF [2.3 MB] The India-Pakistan conflict has variously been described as an ‘enduring rivalry’ or a ‘protracted conflict’ — characterised by its long duration, recurrence of armed exchanges, and the involvement of state and non-state actors. This entrenched conflict began with the birth of the two states in […]
  • Kaveri Dynamic Water Management & Livelihood Protection System (6/12/2017) by Nidhi Gupta - Download the slides as PDF [455 KB] The sharing of waters between Karnataka and Tamil Nadu of the Kaveri river has been the source of a serious political conflict between the states. The current river water management system system relies on court-administered water quotas, which is broken and dysfunctional. These slides propose to replace it […]
  • Individual Liberty vs Public Security in a Radically Networked Society (6/6/2017) by Nitin Pai - By Nitin Pai and Pranay Kotasthane Download the book chapter in PDF [214 KB] The debate of liberty versus security gains special significance in India with the emergence of Radically Networked Societies (RNSs). A Radically Networked Society is defined as a web of hyper connected individuals, possessing an identity (imagined or real), and motivated by […]
  • An Analytical Framework of Climate Change and National Security (2/8/2017) by Nitin Pai - By Nitin Pai Download the slides as PDF [680 KB] Climate change has emerged as an important threat multiplier across the world. The instability brought forth by climate change has resulted in natural disasters, droughts and resource shortages in several regions, sometimes resulting in drastic migration of populace. In the Indian context, the rising river […]
  • Macroeconomic Environment in India: The Role of Fiscal and Monetary Policies (12/20/2016) by Dr M Govinda Rao - By Dr. M Govinda Rao Download the essay in PDF [379 KB] India’s growth story remains highly attractive at a time of fragile global economic recovery, uneven growth and tremendous uncertainty around the global financial and commodity markets. However, taking the economy to a higher growth trajectory over the medium and long term requires considerable […]
  • Demonetisation: Is the Pain Commensurate with the Gain? (12/4/2016) by Dr M Govinda Rao - By Dr. M Govinda Rao Download the essay in PDF [121 KB] The ruling party has hailed the Prime Minister’s announcement of ₹500 and ₹1000 notes becoming invalid as an historic and unprecedented attack on black economy. Conversely, the opposition has called the move a ‘monumental blunder’ and an ‘organised loot.’ For the most part, […]
  • Analysing India Post-Uri Through a Conflict Escalation Framework (12/1/2016) by Pranay Kotasthane - by Pranay Kotasthane, The Takshashila Institution Download the Analysis in PDF [0.8MB] These slides interpret the “surgical strikes” conducted after the Uri terrorist attacks, using the India—Pakistan Conflict Escalation Framework. Based on this framework, the document proposes factors that can help make an Operational Conventional Retaliation work. This paper was presented at  the Takshashila Roundtable on […]
  • Analysis: An Account of Unaccounted Money (11/30/2016) by Anupam Manur - By Anupam Manur and Manasa Venkataraman Download the discussion document in PDF An Account of Unaccounted Income is a discussion document that takes an in-depth look at India’s unaccounted economy. It is important to distinguish between different categories of unaccounted economy, each of which has different method of functioning and different implications for the economy. […]
  • Blue Paper: The Role of Airpower in India’s National Security (11/29/2016) by admin - Download the Blue Paper in PDF[526kB] This Blue Paper on the contemporary role of airpower was prepared as a result of discussions with AVM Arjun Subramaniam. The discussions were held as part of Takshashila’s Bangalore Fellows Programme. The Blue Paper addresses the following questions: How does India go towards a mixed force structure of manned […]
  • Discussion Document – Defamation Reforms: Going Beyond Decriminalisation (11/23/2016) by Madhav Chandavarkar - By Madhav Chandavarkar and Manasa Venkataraman Download the Discussion Document in PDF (248 KB) Executive Summary The law for defamation in India impedes free speech more than it protects reputations. While it is vital to protect an individual’s right to reputation, this must not come at the cost of the right to criticise as the […]
  • Discussion Document — India’s Currency Reform 2016 (11/23/2016) by Nitin Pai - By Nitin Pai and Anupam Manur Download India’s Currency Reform 2016 in PD (455 KB) The recent withdrawal of Rs 500 and Rs 1000 denomination notes as legal tender has evoked various responses. On one hand the government’s stance is that this will reduce a large portion of unaccounted money (also popularly known as black […]
  • A New Institutional Mechanism for Fiscal Management in India (11/2/2016) by Dr M Govinda Rao - By Dr. M Govinda Rao Download the essay in PDF [442 KB] Given the political inclination to indulge in fiscal profligacy, it is important to ensure calibration of rule based fiscal policy to provide space to conduct monetary policies. Although there has been considerable progress in the conduct of rule based fiscal policy and ensuring […]
  • Takshashila Blue Paper on India’s Coastal Security Architecture (10/7/2016) by admin - The Takshashila Institution and the US Consulate, Chennai, hosted a roundtable conference on reviewing India’s coastal security architecture at The Hyatt MG Road, on 23 September 2016. The roundtable discussion brought together experts who brainstormed ideas to secure India’s coastline, effectively and efficiently. The following slides provide an overview of the event, the key challenges […]
  • Research Publication: Sketching Out India’s Role in the Asia-Pacific (8/12/2016) by admin - The Indo-Pacific region has witnessed a huge surge in economic interaction, demographics and transnational security in recent years. The 2016 Australian Defence White Paper affirms that this is Australia’s region however, this is a vast maritime zone engaging the interests of various nations. These include India, Japan, China, the United States in addition to Indonesia, […]
  • Policy Brief: Capacity Analysis for Evacuation of Indian Diaspora (8/10/2016) by Guru Aiyar - Capacity Analysis for Evacuation of Indian Diaspora By Guru Aiyar, Takshashila Fellow Download the brief in PDF format (889KB) EXECUTIVE SUMMARY Since 1991, India has been involved in six major evacuations from West Asia alone. Mass evacuations have become a recurrent feature and it is very likely that the Indian government will be called upon for […]

  • India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order (11/18/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order Edited by: Pranay Kotasthane, Anirudh Kanisetti, and Nitin Pai. Contributors: Akshay Alladi, Alok Prasanna Kumar, Ameya Ashok Naik, Anupam Manur, Aparna Pande, Anirudh Kanisetti, Avinash M. Tripathi, Constantino Xavier, Jakob Urda, James M. Dorsey, Kartik Shanker, Manoj Kewalramani, Meera Anna Oommen, Nitin Pai, Pranay Kotasthane, Raja Karthikeya, Shambhavi Naik, […]
  • Between the Buyer and the Seller (8/25/2017) by Ganesh Chakravarthi - Between the Buyer and the Seller By Karthik Shashidhar Edited by Ganesh Chakravarthi Perfect Paperback: 279 pages Publisher: Takshashila Institution (2017) Language: English ISBN-10: 8193197690 ISBN-13: 978-8193197691 Order now About the book Why is it difficult to find Feta Cheese in Bangalore, or mango pickles in Barcelona? Why are tourists encouraged to bargain? Why do startup platforms provide heavy incentives […]

  • All Things Policy: Struggle and Revolution in Telugu Literature (2/15/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Telugu culture is most often associated with Tollywood today – but at one point, revolutionary Telugu writers and poets were among the most progressive and influential intellectuals of their time. Priya Kodidala, development consultant and founder of The Telugu Archive on Instagram, joins Anirudh Kanisetti to talk about the growth of revolutionary Telugu literature, […]
  • All Things Policy: The Contest to Chart the Indo-Pacific’s Oceans (2/10/2021) by Aditya Pareek - Major powers are ramping up their efforts to map the undersea environment of the Indo-Pacific. Charting and mapping the ocean deeps confer both economic and military advantages and to keep up, India will have to adopt innovative solutions. Aditya Pareek talks to Suyash Desai about how India’s hydrographic efforts contribute to its diplomacy and naval […]
  • All Things Policy: Making Sense of India’s Defence Budget (2/9/2021) by Suyash Desai - A major highlight of the Budget 2021-22 was the 18.75% increase in the capital outlay in allocation towards defence. Suyash Desai talks to Lt Gen Prakash Menon and Pranay Kotasthane about this year’s hike in capital outlay and the reduction in pension allocations. Link to our document – https://takshashila.org.in/takshashila-discussion-document-a-human-capital-investment-model-for-indias-national-security-system/
  • All Things Policy: When The Stonks Are Down (2/8/2021) by Rohan Seth - The Reddit-GameStop saga has been making news around the world. The next few weeks will raise important questions about how much responsibility social media platforms have in cases like these and whether they can be sued for financial damages in similar cases. Anirudh Kanisetti talks to Prateek Waghre and Rohan Seth to examine the fine […]
  • All Things Policy: The Seleukid Empire and the Silk Roads (2/5/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Though often seen as a footnote in Indian history, the Seleukid Empire dominated much of the Hellenistic world after the death of Alexander the Great. Anirudh Kanisetti joins Aditya Ramanathan to discuss its legacy, its relationships with India and the rest of the world, and how it led to the emergence of the international […]
  • All Things Policy: Unpacking Budget 2021 (2/3/2021) by Pranay Kotasthane - This year’s budget included several welcome steps such as higher infrastructure funding and a greater allocation to healthcare. It also included newer ways to raise resources, such as the use of asset monetisation. The budget’s drawbacks included higher import duties and new cesses on agriculture and infrastructure. Pranay Kotashtane, Anupam Manur, and Sarthak Pradhan discuss […]
  • All Things Policy: Asia’s Cold Frontier: Tracking Japan – Russia Ties (2/2/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan - As immediate neighbours, Japan and Russia have an uneasy relationship going back centuries. A long-standing territorial dispute over the Kuril Islands has held back the promise of widening economic cooperation. Could that change in the near future? Aditya Pareek and Aditya Ramanathan discuss recent developments in Japan-Russia ties and the trends that define this fascinating […]
  • All Things Policy: Alexei Navalny – The Face of the Russian Opposition? (2/1/2021) by Aditya Pareek -  Following the arrest of well known Kremlin critic Alexei Navalny, an unprecedented number of protests have broken out across Russia. Navalny has received widespread media attention across the world, after he was allegedly poisoned with Novichok, a nerve agent commonly associated with alleged high profile assassinations carried out by the more shadowy arms of […]
  • All Things Policy: What Angkor Teaches Us About India (1/29/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan - Southeast Asia is generally thought of as being “Indianised” for much of its history – but what does that actually mean? Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan discuss the kingdom of Angkor in modern Cambodia to understand its unique culture and historical trajectory.
  • All Things Policy: How to Foster Science and Tech in India (1/28/2021) by Shambhavi Naik -  The Draft 5th Science, Technology and Innovation Policy 2020 outlines a grand vision for Indian science over the coming years. But is it a feasible one? Aditya Ramanathan and Shambhavi Naik discuss the ideas proposed in this policy, and the questions it leaves unanswered.
  • All Things Policy: Behind the Scenes at All Things Policy (1/27/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - On 27 January, All Things Policy, the world’s only daily public policy podcast, marked 500 episodes. Manoj Kewalramani talks to Aditya Ramanathan and Anirudh Kanisetti about the surprising origins of the podcast, its evolution over the last two years, and its exciting future.
  • All Things Policy: What Should India Do With Its Rare Earth Reserves? (1/25/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Rare earth underpins the Indian economy. But despite being home to the world’s fifth-largest rare earth reserves, India overwhelmingly imports these crucial resources and their derivatives from China, its most significant geopolitical rival. Anirudh Kanisetti joins Manoj Kewalramani to discuss the issues with India’s current strategy and what steps need to be taken to […]
  • All Things Policy: How Not to Secure Women’s Liberty (1/22/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The Madhya Pradesh government recently proposed that women living away from home must register with police stations to be tracked. This may have serious implications for the mobility and privacy of millions of citizens. Anirudh Kanisetti speaks to Asmita Ghosh, Digital Campaigner, and former Campaign Lead at Feminism in India, to understand the impact […]
  • All Things Policy: The Vaccine Update: India’s Rollout and Beyond (1/21/2021) by Shambhavi Naik -  As India launches the first phase of its COVID-19 vaccination programme, Shambhavi Naik talks to Rohan Seth about domestic and international developments, India’s vaccine diplomacy, and the crucial question of efficacy.
  • All Things Policy: Launching India’s Space Start-ups into Orbit (1/20/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan -  As Bengaluru-based start-up Pixxel prepares for the launch of its first satellite into space, we talk to its CEO, Awais Ahmed, about India’s growing commercial space sector, the promise it holds, and the challenges it faces.
  • All Things Policy: Declassified: The US’ Indo-Pacific Strategy (1/19/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - In an unexpected move last week, the US National Security Advisor declassified the Trump administration’s 2018 U.S. Strategic Framework for the Indo-Pacific. What does this tell us about America’s approach to the region? What does it mean from an Indian perspective? And how will this impinge on the new Joe Biden administration? Aditya Ramanathan discusses […]
  • All Things Policy: Jack and the Ant: A Fairytale that’s Ending? (1/18/2021) by Rohan Seth - China’s financial sector is making global news. Jack Ma, the founder of Alibaba, Alipay and Ant Group, has not been heard from recently, while Chinese regulators are reportedly talking about breaking up his fintech empire. Rohan Seth talks to Manoj Kewalramani to understand what led to the Xi Jinping administration targeting China’s most famous entrepreneur. […]
  • All Things Policy: Can India Displace China in Global Supply Chains? (1/15/2021) by Sarthak Pradhan - The rise in international tensions and the decline in economic globalisation are often touted as opportunities for India to become a critical part of global supply chains as businesses exit China. But how many enterprises are actually leaving China? Are they looking to India? And what can India do to become a more attractive destination […]
  • All Things Policy: What Biden Means for India (1/13/2021) by Aditya Ramanathan -  How will Joe Biden’s administration approach relations with India? Should Delhi be worried? Manoj Kewalramani and Aditya Ramanathan discuss the prospects for India-US ties in the post-Trump era.
  • All Things Policy: Trustbusters! What the Microsoft Case Teaches Us About Antitrust (1/12/2021) by Rohan Seth -  Modern tech monopolies are being subject to antitrust investigations in the US and in India. There are lessons they can learn from Microsoft in the 1990s. Rohan Seth talks to Mihir Mahajan on Microsoft’s antitrust troubles and what they tell us about the present. Mihir Mahajan is an expert in intellectual property matters and […]
  • All Things Policy: What was China’s PLA up to in 2020? (1/11/2021) by Manoj Kewalramani - The year 2020 was critical for the Chinese armed forces. Its goal of achieving mechanisation was delayed, as were recruitment reforms. Meanwhile, assertion with regard to territorial disputes intensified. In this episode, Manoj Kewalramani talks to Suyash Desai about all the developments related to the Chinese People’s Liberation Army in 2020 and what we can […]
  • All Things Policy: What’s Going to Happen in 2021? (1/8/2021) by Anupam Manur -  2020 was one of the most turbulent years in recent history. What’s 2021 going to look like? Anupam Manur and Pranay Kotasthane speak to Anirudh Kanisetti about their big economic and geopolitical predictions for the next year. We’ll revisit this in 2022 to see if they managed to get anything right! Join Takshashila’s PublicGyaan […]
  • All Things Policy: Can you Speed up Vaccine Approval? (1/7/2021) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  India’s approval of two COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use has received mixed responses. Shambhavi Naik, Anirudh Kanisetti and Sunila Dixit discuss the approval process, the possible consequences of speeding things up and the potential impact on public confidence.
  • All Things Policy: Great Books From a Year of Reading (1/6/2021) by Rohan Seth -  2020 has been a strange year. One thing that remained constant at Takshashila was our love for reading. Manoj Kewalramani joins Nitin Pai and Rohan Seth to talk about their reading lists and learnings from tech, policy, fiction, and beyond. Link to the latest edition of Rohan’s newsletter: https://pdfchomper.substack.com/p/hand-me-the-paper-2?r=5dfoh&utm_campaign=post&utm_medium=web&utm_source=copy Link to Rohan’s reading list: […]
  • All Things Policy: How Britain Spied on the Seas (1/5/2021) by Aditya Pareek - The Royal Navy has been one of the most formidable forces ever to put to sea in history. Through modern times, the Royal Navy has been served by a well-oiled intelligence machine made of many cogs. Aditya Pareek talks to Aditya Ramanathan about Andrew Boyd’s recent book, British Naval Intelligence Through the Twentieth Century, and […]
  • All Things Policy: The Curious Case of Markets, Masks and Hand Sanitisers (1/4/2021) by Saurabh Modi -  The availability and quality of face masks and hand sanitisers have improved many times over since the pandemic began. How did this happen? Sarthak Pradhan joins Saurabh Modi to discuss how markets solved the problem of scarcity with urgency and innovation.
  • All Things Policy: Civilisation: What Ancient Mesopotamia Tells Us about India (12/28/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The Indian Subcontinent had some of the oldest cities in the world – but we know almost nothing about the urban culture of the Indus Valley, especially compared to its contemporaries in ancient Mesopotamia. In our last episode of 2020, Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan take a step back to see what the origins […]
  • All Things Policy: Quad and the Semiconductor Value Chain (12/24/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The semiconductor value chain is one of the most diverse supply chains in the tech world. No one country has been successful in having a completely domestic supply chain. Could collaborations within international groupings such as the Quad improve supply chain resilience?. Anirudh Kanisetti talks to Pranay Kotasthane and Rohan Seth about how such […]
  • All Things Policy: How Can Citizens Make Cities Better? (12/23/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan -  While Indians lavish attention on general and state elections, democracy at the municipal tends to be ignored or hijacked by extraneous issues. In this episode, Suman Joshi, programme manager for Takshashila’s Graduate Certificate in Public Policy, makes the case for ‘active citizenship’ as a possible way of engaging in city-level issues and fixing India’s […]
  • All Things Policy: Should AYUSH Doctors Perform Surgeries? (12/22/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - A recent notification from the Ministry of AYUSH says post-graduate AYUSH doctors will be trained to perform 39 types of surgeries. The notification has caused discontent among modern medicine doctors and led them to go on strike. Anirudh Kanisetti talks with Shambhavi Naik and Sunila Dixit about the decision and what it means for the […]
  • All Things Policy: Europe’s China Dilemma (12/21/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Even as incoming US President Joe Biden vows to craft a “coherent strategy” on China, the European Union is trying to clinch a trade deal with Beijing. How do Europeans view the rise of China? And how can Europe balance its American alliance with its desire for strategic autonomy? Manoj Kewalramani unpacks the dynamics of […]
  • All Things Policy: What are China’s Lunar Ambitions? (12/18/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - China’s Change 5 mission returned to Earth after a 23-day mission to the moon during which it collected two kilograms of lunar samples. What does this mission tell us about China’s lunar program? And how does India’s own moon exploration program stack up? Pradeep Mohandas talks to Aditya Ramanathan.
  • All Things Policy: Surprises in the National Family Health Survey (12/17/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - The Ministry of Health and Family Welfare released the findings of the first phase of the National Family Health Survey 5. While indicators on family planning and vaccination have improved, the trends of nutrition are concerning. Anirudh Kanisetti talks to Sunila Dixit and Shambhavi Naik about the possible reasons behind the increase in undernutrition among […]
  • All Things Policy: Is the FTC Suit Against Facebook Fair? (12/16/2020) by Anupam Manur - The US Federal Trade Commission is suing Facebook for its acquisitions of WhatsApp and Instagram. Is Facebook monopolising the personal social networking marketplace? Anupam Manur and Rohan Seth weigh the evidence and debate whether the FTC action is fair.
  • All Things Policy: India-China Ties: The Strategic Dimension (12/15/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani -  Indian Foreign Minister S. Jaishankar said this week that the relationship with China had been “significantly damaged” this year. In fact, as winter sets in, multiple rounds of talks at the Corps Commander level have failed to result in disengagement and de-escalation in eastern Ladakh. In this episode, Manoj Kewalramani talks to Lt. General […]
  • All Things Policy: Bear’s Den: Why Does Russia Want A Naval Base in the Red Sea? (12/14/2020) by Aditya Pareek -  Russia is planning to lease a naval base in Sudan for at least 25 years. Aditya Pareek talks to Aditya Ramanathan about Moscow’s underlying ambitions, the geopolitics driving this move, and the state of Russia’s fleet, especially its flagship Admiral Kuznetsov. Samuel Ramani analyses Russia’s Sudan plans: https://rusi.org/commentary/russia-port-sudan-naval-base-power-play-red-sea A new biography of legendary Soviet […]
  • All Things Policy: Is India Getting a COVID-19 Vaccine Soon? (12/11/2020) by Shambhavi Naik -  Vaccines are being approved for emergency use in countries like the UK and Canada. Can India do the same? Sunila Dixit talks to Shambhavi Naik about the status of various vaccine candidates, a planned app to ease tracking of vaccine deployment, and other developments on the COVID-19 vaccine front.
  • All Things Policy: Could Spies Avert the Next Pandemic? (12/10/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan -  As threats from disease outbreaks and ecological disasters grow, should intelligence agencies be tasked with tracking them? What are the potential benefits and pitfalls of such a move? Takshashila’s director Nitin Pai joins distinguished fellow and former Special Secretary in the Research & Analysis Wing, Anand Arni, to debate these matters in a conversation […]
  • All Things Policy: Is Corporate Ownership of Banks a Good Idea? (12/9/2020) by Sarthak Pradhan -  An internal working group set up by RBI recommended allowing corporate houses to own and operate banks. Sarthak Pradhan joins Saurabh Modi to discuss the reasoning behind the move and the new challenges it could create.
  • All Things Policy: The Death of a Scientist and the Future of Iran’s Nuclear Programme (12/8/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - The killing of Iranian nuclear scientist Mohsen Fakhrizadeh has dimmed prospects for a renewed nuclear deal with Iran. Will US President-elect Joe Biden be able to resume talks? And how will the killing affect India’s relationship with Iran? Manoj Kewalramani talks to Dr. Hina Pandey, Associate Fellow at the Centre for Air Power Studies. Dr. […]
  • All Things Policy: Does One Nation, One Election Make Sense? (12/7/2020) by Prasanna Naidu - Recently, on the Constitution Day, the Prime Minister called for replacing current election cycles with simultaneous elections. While this is not a new idea, does it solve the challenges of holding several elections? And are there better solutions? Prasanna Naidu and Pranay Kotasthane discuss the “one election” idea and some possible alternatives to it. Link […]
  • All Things Policy: Is India Really Closer to Achieving its Sanitation Goals? (12/4/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  A new WHO report, State of the World’s Sanitation, reveals what progress has been made and what remains to be done. What are the social factors affecting the utilization of sanitation facilities? Is India actually 100% open-defecation free? Shambhavi Naik and Sunila Dixit discuss these questions and more.
  • All Things Policy: Guidelines for Cab Aggregators: The good, the bad, and the unnecessary (12/3/2020) by Anupam Manur - The Ministry of Road Transport & Highways has issued new Motor Vehicle Aggregators guidelines. These have some serious implications for companies like Uber and Ola. Rohan Seth talks to Anupam Manur about what the fine print really means for both riders and drivers. Link to the guidelines: https://morth.nic.in/sites/default/files/notifications_document/Motor%20Vehicle%20Aggregators27112020150046.pdf
  • All Things Policy: Dropping Out of RCEP: An Opportunity Lost for India (12/2/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - For a larger regional and global presence, India needs to be pro-active in joining free trade agreements. Dropping out of RCEP is an opportunity lost to push the Indian industry towards greater competitiveness. Anupam Manur and Manoj Kewalramani examine what this means for India’s trade strategy and why Delhi must change its protectionist stance.
  • All Things Policy: Lessons to Learn on Big Tech Regulation (12/1/2020) by Atish Padhy -  Both the US and Europe have attempted to regulate ‘Big Tech’ effectively. Soon, it will be India’s turn to work out new ground rules for these novel technologies and business practices. Atish Padhy and Saurabh Modi join Anirudh Kanisetti to discuss what India should learn from the Western experience, and how can it approach […]
  • All Things Policy: Should 2020 be a Zero Year for Education? (11/30/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  The COVID-19 pandemic has worsened inequalities in India’s education sector. While many schools and colleges have resorted to online classes, millions of students struggle to get access to the required technology. Should India consider declaring 2020 a zero year, requiring all students to repeat this academic year in 2021-22? Saurabh Modi and Atish Padhy […]
  • All Things Policy: How Effective Are the New COVID Vaccines? (11/27/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  How is vaccine effectiveness calculated? Should ministers be part of vaccine clinical trials? Sunila Dixit is joined by Ameya Paleja and Shambhavi Naik to discuss the latest developments in vaccines to combat COVID-19. Ask us your questions about COVID-19 vaccines by emailing us at research@takshashila.org or tweet to us @TakshashilaInst
  • All Things Policy: How Not To Regulate Disinformation (11/26/2020) by Prateek Waghre -  The Kerala State government has backed down from amending its Police Act to include imprisonment for social media posts considered “offensive” or “defamatory”. But different efforts to tackle disinformation across the country throughout 2020 indicate that we risk short-term responses without considering the long-term fall out. In this episode, Rohan Seth talks to Prateek […]
  • All Things Policy: The World Health Assembly Meets Amid a Pandemic (11/25/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  While the pandemic rages on without end, the 73rd World Health Assembly has passed important resolutions relating to vaccination, food security, and other diseases. Manoj Kewalramani and Sunila Dixit talk about the recent resolutions as well as the controversial resolution passed in May calling for an investigation into WHO handling of the crisis. Referred […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Surya Prakash BS on Reimagining India’s Revenue (11/24/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, lawyer and accountant Surya Prakash BS joins Pranay Kotasthane to talk about how India’s byzantine revenue system can […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Kunal Singh on Leveraging the India-US Partnership (11/23/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Kunal Singh, a Ph.D. candidate at MIT, joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about how […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Shruti Rajagopalan on India’s Strength in Numbers (11/20/2020) by Anupam Manur - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, economist Shruti Rajagopalan joins Anupam Manur to talk about how India’s population is one of its biggest assets. […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Raja Karthikeya on India as an International Mediator (11/19/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Raja Karthikeya, a UN diplomat, joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about how international mediation […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Ameya Naik on India and the Rules-Based International Order (11/18/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Ameya Ashok Naik joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about the rules-based international order. Is […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Marathon: Alok Prasanna Kumar on Reforming India’s Institutions (11/17/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - The Takshashila Institution has launched a new book, India’s Marathon: Reshaping the Post-Pandemic World Order, a collection of essays by public intellectuals about our changing world and what India needs to do to thrive. In this episode, author Alok Prasanna Kumar joins Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan to talk about the issues that India’s institutions […]
  • All Things Policy: Pfizer and the Hunt for a COVID-19 Vaccine (11/13/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  What does Pfizer’s announcement about its COVID-19 vaccine mean? Why did Brazil halt China’s SinoVac vaccine trial? When will Serum Institute’s vaccine be ready? Manoj Kewalramani is joined by Ameya Paleja and Sunila Dixit to talk about progress being made towards workable vaccines for COVID-19.
  • All Things Policy: What India’s Information Ecosystem Can Learn from the US Elections (11/12/2020) by Prateek Waghre -  Information disorder took center-stage in the 2020 US elections, with mass-media and social media platforms both amplifying and containing narratives. What lessons can the information ecosystem in India learn from them? Prateek Waghre is joined by Devika Khandelwal from ‘Logically’ and Himanshi Dahiya from ‘The Quint’ to talk about this. Relevant Links: 1. https://thewire.in/tech/2020-us-elections-information-ecosystem-social-media 2. https://www.logically.ai/articles/bihar-elections-how-reliable-polls […]
  • All Things Policy: How Will Biden Deal With China? (11/11/2020) by Suyash Desai -  Will a Biden administration get tougher on Beijing? Will it ease the pressure? Or will it be more of the same? Manoj Kewalramani and Suyash Desai join Aditya Ramanathan to discuss what the coming years might hold for US-China relations.
  • All Things Policy: What Ancient Egypt Tells Us About Ourselves (11/10/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Cleopatra, the last active ruler of Ptolemaic Egypt is closer to our time than the Great Pyramid of Giza was to her time. How did ancient Egypt last so long? And how did it combine dynamism with endurance? Anirudh Kanisetti joins Aditya Ramanathan to discuss the origins, ascent, and eventual decline of this astonishing civilization […]
  • All Things Policy: What Today’s Submarines Owe to the Cold War and WWII (11/9/2020) by Aditya Pareek -  The cutting edge features in naval submarines today are the legacy of Cold War-era technologies that were, in turn, derived from both Axis and Allied efforts from the 1930s. Suyash Desai and Aditya Pareek discuss the fascinating history of how today’s submarines came to be. You can read Aditya Pareek’s blog post on the […]
  • All Things Policy: China’s Plan for the Next Five Years (11/6/2020) by Suyash Desai -  China held the fifth plenary session of the 19th Communist Party Central Committee last week. The primary task was to assess the results of the 13th Five-Year Plan (2016-2020) and consider the draft proposal for the 14th Five-Year Plan (2021-2025). What were the major takeaways from the plenary session? What are the significant economic, […]
  • All Things Policy: Rags to Riches: The Mystery of Social Mobility in India (11/5/2020) by Sarthak Pradhan -  Social mobility refers to a change in one’s social status relative to one’s current social location. What are the factors impacting social mobility? What is the extent of social mobility in India? What are its impact on society, politics, and the economy? In this episode, Apurva Kumar and Sarthak Pradhan analyse some recent academic […]
  • All Things Policy: The Political Theatre of Section 230 (11/4/2020) by Prateek Waghre -  The US Senate questioned the CEOs of Facebook, Twitter, and Google on whether Section 230- which shields them from liability for the actions of online users – enables their own ‘bad behaviour’. What’s driving this new bout of scrutiny? And how will this affect the policy landscape in India? Manoj Kewalramani speaks to Rohan […]
  • All Things Policy: The Perils of Stubble Burning (11/3/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  Stubble burning in the states of Punjab, Haryana, and Uttar Pradesh contributes to air pollution in North India during the wintertime. Sowmya Nandan talks to Sunila Dixit about the causes behind the stubble burning and the policy actions taken by the state governments to curb it.
  • All Things Policy: How Australia Sees the Indo-Pacific (11/2/2020) by Nitin Pai -  In a historic development, Australia will join the Malabar naval exercise in November along with India, the US and Japan. High Commissioner Barry O’Farell joins Nitin Pai and Pranay Kotasthane to talk about the exercise, bilateral ties with India, and the future of the Indo-Pacific.
  • All Things Policy: Understanding the Taliban’s Strategies for War and Peace (10/30/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan -  The United States, the Afghan government, and the Taliban are vying for advantage in the ongoing talks. In a conversation with Pranay Kotasthane and Aditya Ramanathan, Takshashila’s distinguished fellow, Anand Arni dissects the strategies of various players and what they mean for India.
  • All Things Policy: Reforming the Power Sector OR Can we have less power cuts? (10/29/2020) by Anupam Manur -  Reforms are long overdue in India’s power sector. Does the recent draft Electricity Amendment Bill offer viable solutions? Anupam Manur and Sarthak Pradhan discuss the challenges India’s power sector faces and analyze whether the draft bill provisions can address them.
  • All Things Policy: Is Herd Immunity a Viable Strategy for COVID-19? (10/28/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  A recent declaration from a group of experts calls for a different strategy to deal with COVID-19: one of achieving herd immunity while protecting the vulnerable. The majority of experts oppose this, pointing out that the idea is impractical and that there are no alternatives to robust public health measures. Sunila Dixit and Shambhavi […]
  • All Things Policy: Making Content Policy for Hate Speech (10/27/2020) by Prateek Waghre -  It has been a busy time for content moderation and social media. Facebook has updated its policy on holocaust denial and Delhi’s Peace and Harmony Committee recently talked about the outcomes of content moderation practices on Facebook. Manoj Kewalramani talks to Prateek Waghre and Rohan Seth for analysis on developments. Link to register for […]
  • All Things Policy: The Paradoxes of Pakistani Politics (10/26/2020) by Anand Arni - What’s fuelling political instability in Pakistan? Why are opposition parties rallying behind former Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif – and against army chief, General Qamar Javed Bajwa? Has the COVID-19 pandemic altered Pakistani politics? In a conversation with Suyash Desai, Pranay Kotasthane and Anand Arni try and unpack the dramatic developments in Pakistan.
  • All Things Policy: Who Really Wrote the Arthashastra? (10/23/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - The Arthashastra is famously believed to have been composed by Chanakya, the prime minister of Chandragupta Maurya. But a new wave of scholarship is challenging that idea. Was Chanakya real? Who really wrote the Arthashastra, and what does it tell us about the literature, courts and politics of both modern and ancient India? To get […]
  • All Things Policy: Submarine Cables: Why They Matter and Who Threatens Them (10/22/2020) by Aditya Pareek -  Around 97% of all global communications are facilitated by submarine telecom cables. These cables, and the online connectivity they enable, are crucial to India’s economic recovery and progress. What are the possible threats to these cables? And how can India secure them? Anirudh Kanisetti joins Aditya Pareek to discuss. You can find Aditya Pareek’s […]
  • All Things Policy: Mental Health and the Pandemic (10/21/2020) by Sunila Dixit -  Prolonged periods of isolation and loss of jobs due to COVID-19 have resulted in rising cases of suicide, depression, and anxiety. Open conversations about mental health are the best way to address the stigma surrounding it. Sunila Dixit talks to Ann John of Global Youth Mental Health awareness about various aspects of mental health […]
  • All Things Policy: To Break or Not to Break: Discussing the US Congressional Report on Antitrust (10/20/2020) by Rohan Seth -  The US Subcommittee on Antitrust, Commercial, and Administrative Law came out with a 449-page report on monopoly power in digital markets. How might recommendations from this report impact the functioning of Amazon, Google, Apple, and Facebook across different countries? Anupam Manur and Rohan Seth join Prateek Waghre in reading the fine print. Link to […]
  • All Things Policy: What’s Happening in Space? (10/19/2020) by Suyash Desai -  It’s been an eventful couple of weeks in matters relating to space, with eight nations signing an agreement on moon exploration and new advances in the reusable craft. Suyash Desai talks to Aditya Pareek about these developments and more. You can check out Aditya Pareek’s newsletter Space Matters here: https://takshashila.org.in/space-matters-v-0-1/
  • All Things Policy: How the Portuguese Influenced India’s Culture (10/16/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - From a transformation of cuisines to vanishing creole languages to loan words we use every day, the influence of Portugal on the fabric of life in the subcontinent is endlessly fascinating. Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan join author Karthik Malli to discuss his research into this little-understood subject. Check out Aditya and Anirudh’s episode of […]
  • All Things Policy: The Hidden Realities Behind Crime Statistics (10/15/2020) by Sarthak Pradhan - What state has the worst crime rates? That’s not easy to tell because crime statistics in India aren’t always accurate reflections of the actual crime situation. In this episode, Sowmya Nandan and Sarthak Pradhan discuss the origins of this problem and how it can be tackled.
  • All Things Policy: China’s Blueprint for Data Security (10/14/2020) by Rohan Seth -  China recently launched the Global Data Security Initiative, laying out eight important principles. One of these principles talks about the need to use judicial processes to provide law enforcement access to data. That spells bad news for India. Prateek Waghre talks to Manoj Kewalramani and Rohan Seth to discuss the fine print. Link to […]
  • All Things Policy: The Trials and Tribulations of ASHAs (10/13/2020) by Sunila Dixit - Why did India’s auxiliary health workers, the ASHAs, go on strike? Sunila Dixit talks to Anirudh Kanisetti about the challenges ASHAs have faced – the increased burden from the COVID-19 pandemic, the lack of protective equipment, and delays in salaries -and what can be done about it. Check out our previous podcast with Soumya Kapoor […]
  • All Things Policy: Taiwan’s China Threat (10/12/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani - Tensions between China and Taiwan are on the rise due to repeated Chinese military drills and activities in the Taiwan Strait. In this episode, Manoj and Suyash talk to Sunila about what it means for the future of China-Taiwan relations, and what should India’s Taiwan policy be. Check out our previous podcast on Taiwan: https://ivmpodcasts.com/all-things-policy-episode-list/2020/8/17/ep-392-pivoting-towards-taiwan Our […]
  • All Things Policy: How Can States Help Themselves? (10/9/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - The stalemate between the Union and the states with regards to GST compensation continues. Even if it is resolved, it is going to be a temporary fix. States will need to explore ways to leverage their untapped revenue generation potential. In this episode, Pranay and Sarthak discuss how states can reduce their financial dependence on […]
  • All Things Policy: Does Facebook Risk Antitrust Action? (10/8/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan -  Facebook reportedly aims to integrate Messenger and Instagram Direct. While this may have been in the works all along, it’s now stirring murmurs about US antitrust action. Aditya Ramanathan joins Rohan Seth and Prateek Waghre to break down recent events. Rohan’s column: https://www.deccanchronicle.com/technology/in-other-news/041020/tech-this-week-facebook-services-integration-comes-with-trade-offs.html Steven Levy’s book: https://www.amazon.in/Facebook-Inside-Story-Steven-Levy-ebook/dp/B081R296DR/ref=sr_1_2?dchild=1&keywords=facebook+the+inside+story&qid=1601961536&sr=8-2
  • All Things Policy: Ethics in Clinical Trials (10/7/2020) by Shambhavi Naik -  ICMR’s 2017 ethical guidelines need a revision, with more focus on fundamental principles that govern the moral decisions and on ethical dilemmas that arise while conducting clinical trials/biomedical and health research. Sowmya Nandan talks to Sunila Dixit and Shambhavi Naik about the evolution of ethical guidelines in India and about the proposed ethical guidance […]
  • All Things Policy: How Should We Disagree Online? (10/6/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Interventions against problematic discourse online can result in amplifying it due a combination of group dynamics and algorithmic reward. For example, retweeting something controversial to debunk it might end up making it more popular. How can different participants – such as states, societies, platforms, and the media – position themselves in the face of […]
  • All Things Policy: Choppy Waters in the South China Sea (10/5/2020) by Suyash Desai -  As China asserts itself once again in the South China Sea, the United States outlines a new position, and regional actors react cautiously, Suyash Desai discusses the latest development and India’s options in a conversation with Sunila Dixit and Aditya Ramanathan.
  • All Things Policy: How China’s Belt and Road Initiative is Adapting to COVID (10/1/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani -  Even as the world is buffeted by a global pandemic and massive economic slowdowns, China’s ambitious Belt and Road Initiative (BRI) is quietly adapting to the new realities. In a conversation with Rohan Seth and Aditya Ramanathan, Manoj Kewalramani discusses Beijing’s strategy and the risks that still lie ahead for BRI. You can read […]
  • All Things Policy: Celebrities and Vaccines, From the 19th Century to the Present (9/30/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Can celebrities help build trust in a new vaccine? Shambhavi Naik and Anirudh Kanisetti talk to Aditya Ramanathan about the historical role celebrities have played in facilitating vaccinations in India since the early 1800s and why authorities could use platforms like the IPL to do so again. On the Mysorean queens who helped popularise […]
  • All Things Policy: Online Fashion Vs Amazon (9/29/2020) by Prateek Waghre - Why did the Competition Commission of India rule in favour of Amazon in an antitrust case brought by a fashion brand? Rohan Seth and Prateek Waghre discuss this ruling and its implications. The CCI order can be found here: (https://www.cci.gov.in/sites/default/files/09-of-2020.pdf)
  • All Things Policy: Why Great Powers Procrastinate (9/28/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Why did the United States aid and abet China’s rise instead of “strangling the baby in the cradle”? Manoj Kewalramani, Pranay Kotasthane, and Aditya Ramanathan discuss the arguments of political scientist David Edelstein, who offers fascinating explanations for why rivals cooperate. You’ll find a pithy explanation of David Edelstein’s framework on Pranay’s newsletter: https://publicpolicy.substack.com/p/70-concentrated-costs-diffused-benefits You […]
  • All Things Policy: India’s Sea War Against Germany and Japan (9/25/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - From 1939 to 1945, the Royal Indian Navy fought on the high seas in the greatest conflict in human history. In this episode, Commodore Odakkal Johnson, director of the Maritime History Society joins Aditya Ramanathan and Aditya Pareek to talk about the Royal Indian Navy’s exploits and its legacy. Commodore Odakkal Johnson’s Book: (https://amzn.to/3kO59sD)
  • All Things Policy: Reforming the Information Technology Act (9/24/2020) by Rohan Seth - The Internet in India is governed by the IT Act. But the powers this law gives the state need to be balanced with due process and adequate safeguards. Rohan Seth and Prateek Waghre are joined by Gopal Jain, a Supreme Court advocate and advisor to the Esya Centre to talk about reforming the IT Act […]
  • All Things Policy: Military Revolutions: Past, Present, and Future (9/23/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti - Recent Pentagon reports indicate that China is quickly leveling the scales against the US by building up its military. New frontiers in military technology are constantly being pushed, from hypersonic missiles to satellite-based systems. Aditya Ramanathan and Anirudh Kanisetti take a step back to understand the phenomenon of military revolutions and how they’ve shaped global […]
  • All Things Policy: Serosurveys and the True Picture of the Pandemic in India (9/22/2020) by Shambhavi Naik - India’s national and state/city level serosurveys have come up with concerning results. The disparity between the estimated number of cases based on seroprevalence and the actual number of cases reported is, in some cases, nearly 500 to 600 times off the mark, with serious implications on our knowledge of how the pandemic is spreading and […]
  • All Things Policy: Inside China’s National Security State (9/21/2020) by Aditya Ramanathan - Ever since Xi Jinping assumed power in China in late 2012, concerns about domestic stability, external challenges, and the resilience of Party rule have led to the building of a national security state. How has the Chinese constructed this apparatus? What role do the anti-corruption and rectification campaigns play? Aditya Ramanathan speaks to Suyash Desai […]
  • All Things Policy: Whose History is it Anyway? (9/18/2020) by Anirudh Kanisetti -  Do statues, monuments and buildings represent history? Or just the preoccupations of those that erected them? Should statues of problematic figures be taken down? Anirudh Kanisetti and Aditya Ramanathan join Manoj Kewalramani to debate the vexed questions around the commemoration of the history and the modern politics of statues.
  • All Things Policy: The Wicked Problem of Coordinated Inauthentic Behaviour (9/17/2020) by Prateek Waghre -  CIB or Coordinated Inauthentic Behaviour is a precise-sounding term that remains imprecise. As the recent Buzzfeed exposé on Facebook highlights, platform action against such activities is often subjective and haphazard. How are narratives manipulated on platforms? How can platforms address this? What could be the consequences? Manoj Kewalramani discusses with Rohan Seth and Prateek […]
  • All Things Policy: Why Neglecting Opportunity Costs Leads to Bad Policy (9/16/2020) by Sarthak Pradhan -  Opportunity cost is the value of the next best alternative that is foregone when exercising a particular option. Any good public policy needs to take this into account, to avoid an inefficient allocation of scarce resources. Pranay Kotasthane and Sarthak Pradhan discuss the concept of opportunity cost neglect and its public policy implications across […]
  • All Things Policy: How Can We Vaccinate India? (9/15/2020) by Shambhavi Naik -  Once a safe and effective vaccine for COVID-19 is available, who should get inoculated first? And how will India vaccinate at least 800 million of its citizens? Shambhavi Naik and Ameya Paleja discuss their new vaccine strategy with Anirudh Kanisetti.
  • All Things Policy: Making Sense of the LAC Standoff (9/14/2020) by Manoj Kewalramani -  Is the joint statement between India and China on 10th September a sign that the two sides are finding a way to end their standoff on the LAC? Manoj Kewalramani and Suyash Desai join Aditya Ramanathan to analyse the ground situation, the diplomatic maneuvers, and the prospects for defusing the ongoing crisis.
  • Pakistan’s Sub-Conventional Warfare and India’s Options (9/13/2020) by Pranay Kotasthane - Pranay was on The BridgeProject podcast to talk about Pakistan’s strategy of sub-conventional warfare and India’s likely response options.